Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Two communist extortionists nabbed after a clash with government troops in Sorsogon, 4 firearms seized

JUBAN, Sorsogon- Two NPA bandits were nabbed by combined forces of the Army and the Philippine National Police after a brief clash  in this province on Monday, August 21.

Lt Col Teody Toribio, the Commanding Officer of the 31st Infantry Battalion here, said that the clash occurred in the hinterland village of Abad Santos, Bulan town at around 9:00am.

He said that he sent a team of soldiers led by 1st Lt Rory Esico and a team of  local police  led by P/Insp Rufino Noog upon hearing a complaint regarding the NPA's extortion activities in the said village.

"Through the help of a civilian tipster, the troops have directly pinpointed and collared the two armed extortionists who were caught red-handed with their firearms. They raised their hands upon realizing that they were completely surrounded," he said.

The soldiers confiscated a Cal 5.56mm M16A1 Rifle and a 9mm semi-automatic pistol from the two suspects identified as Alex Gerandino,24, a.k.a. Monique and Florence Galos a.k.a. Audrey.

Both suspects came from the village of Macawayan of Irosin town in Sorsogon and were turned over to Bulan Municipal Police Station for inquest proceedings.

During their detention, the policemen extracted information about the existence of an encampment in nearby San Juan Daan village of the same town, prompting Toribio to send another group of soldiers to check the veracity of the information.

While approaching the vicinity of the encampment at around 10:00am, a clash erupted when the soldiers and policemen were met with automatic fires from at least 15 rebels, triggering a running gun battle which lasted about 20 minutes.

The bandits hastily scampered to various directions, some of whom used civilian residents as human shields by mingling with a crowd of farmers.

Toribio said that the soldiers spotted bloodstains along the trails used by the fleeing rebels.

"I believe that  a number of them  got wounded or killed as indicated by the blood traces in the encounter site. The rebels left behind another Cal. 5.56mm M16 Rifle and a Cal .45 M1911A1 pistol, along with several improvised bombs and bomb accessories," said Toribio.

No one was harmed among the government forces who have continuously pursued the rebels, guided by the civilian tipsters through text messages.

The detained suspects are facing serious criminal charges including illegal possession of firearms and explosives and extortion.

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