Archive for November 5th, 2012

Gun-runner slain, 4 others arrested in Davao

By Anthony S. Allada

DAVAO CITY – An alleged leader of a gun-running group was killed while four others were arrested following a buy-bust operation mounted by operatives of the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) 11 in Sirawan, Toril district here.

Sr. Supt. Albert Ignatius Ferro, CIDG 11 regional chief, said that Ridwan Bantugan shot it out with the operating team that resulted to the exchange of gunfire.

Bantugan was hit on the head that caused his instant death.

Ferro said that his men led by Sr. Insp. Francis Sonza conducted a buy-bust operation at 3:30 p.m. Monday where they would have to buy a Baby Armalite rifle, two .45 caliber pistols and two .38 caliber revolvers for P200,000 outside Bantugan’s house in Barangay Sirawan, a kilometer-away from the checkpoint of the Task Force Davao.

He said that Bantugan reportedly sensed that he had a transaction with policemen that he started to fire at them. One of the operating team fired back and hit him on the head.

Recovered from his possession were his Baby Armalite rifle, .45 caliber pistol and 9mm caliber pistol.

In a follow-up operation, two .45 caliber pistols and two .38 caliber revolvers were recovered from the suspect’s house.

Four men believed to be companions of Bantugan in the gun-running operation were also arrested at the height of the commotion while two others managed to escape.

Ferro said that the operation came after an intensive month-long surveillance following complaints from neighbors of a series of indiscriminate firing during day and night time and that there were a reported illegal selling of firearms in the place.

He cited the participation of elements of the Task Force Davao, who conducted a patrol during the operation to control the people there. (ASA)




NPAs kill 4 soldiers in Davao hinterlands

By Anthony S. Allada

DAVAO CITY – Four soldiers, who were reportedly on off-duty and in civilian attire, were killed when they were sprayed with bullets Sunday afternoon by suspected members of the New People’s Army in Paquibato district here.

Lt. Col. Lyndon Paniza, spokesperson of the 10th Infantry Division, identified the fatalities as Private First Class’ (Pfcs)  Ahian Vir Dolero, Marvin Lauronal and Noel Sigan, members of the 60th Infantry Battalion, who died on the spot.

Another companion, Private Marcelo Himaya, was earlier reported missing until he was found nearby and was believed to be summarily executed.

Paniza said the victims’ remains were later brought to Villa Funeral Homes in Panabo City in Davao del Norte.

He said that the four soldiers were on board three motorcycles, wearing civilian clothes and unarmed and on their way back to their detachment at Sitio Cinco, Barangay Mapula, Paquibato district when they were attacked by undetermined number of communist rebels at around 5:30 p.m. Sunday.

Paniza said that the attack came four days after a fish vendor was also liquidated by members of the sparrow unit of the communist group in the nearby Malabog village in Paquibato.

He said that 29-year-old Rannel Parilla was executed Wednesday afternoon by four rebels while the victim was only bending fish outside their house along with his wife Edgiely.

“The Organized Crime Group-NPA once again showed their true nature as cold-blooded criminals by means of sowing fear by killing innocent civilians, more so a resident who just wants to earn a living to fend his family,” he said.

Paniza said they should be penalized on this violation as cited in the Comprehensive Agreement on Respect for Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law (CARHRIHL) Part 4, Article 4, Paragraph 4 which clearly stated that ‘civilian population shall be treated and protected as such and shall be distinguished from combatants, together with their property, shall not be the object of attack’.

“Human rights watchdogs seem to have been blinded whenever these atrocities happen perpetrated by the  New People’s Army”, he said. (ASA)

Army commander quits post over ‘tactical lapse’ of 13 men

By Anthony S. Allada

DAVAO CITY – The commander of the Philippine Army’s 27th Infantry Battalion quit from his post after 13 of his men were allegedly found to be guilty of “tactical lapse” over the death of the wife and two sons of a B’laan tribal leader in Kiblawan town in Davao del Sur.

Lt. Col. Lyndon Paniza, spokesperson of the 10th Infantry Division, said that Lt. Col. Alexis Bravo has resigned “to allow other third party groups to investigate the incident freely and to prove that there is no cover-up in the search for truth in this incident.”

Paniza said Bravo’s resignation takes effect Monday and he will be replaced by Lt. Col. Shalimar Imperial.

“(Bravo’s) action is laudable and an example of a true gentleman and courageous leader who is willing to accept the consequence of his action and of his subordinates,” Paniza said.

He said Bravo is already one year and six months as the 27th IB commander and there is still no assignment yet for him.

The resignation comes after a military inquiry found that the 13 soldiers under Bravo, led by 1st Lt. Dante Jimenez, committed tactical lapse in the military operation on October 18 that killed the wife and two sons of tribal leader Daguil Capion.

Killed were Capion’s 27-year-old wife Juvy and their sons Pop, 13, and John, 8.

The soldiers said they were fired upon as they neared a hut of the Capion family in an isolated part of Kiblawan town, prompting them to fire back.

But they were found negligent when they engaged in a shootout with the tribal leader because they did not try to avoid civilian casualties.

Jimenez had been temporarily relieved from his post pending the results of the investigation.The 13 soldiers could face life in jail if found guilty.

Specifically, the board want the 13 soldiers tried for violation of the Articles of War 76 (misbehavior before the enemy); 96 (conduct unbecoming an officer and gentleman) and 97 (conduct prejudicial to good order and military discipline).

This came even as Bishop Guillermo Afable of the Diocese of Digos commended military officials for initiating the investigation by the Board of Inquiry on 13 soldiers in connection with the death of the wife and two sons of a B’laan tribal leader in Kiblawan town, this province, last month.

“I commend the Army’s 10th ID (Infantry Division) for the reported outcome of the investigation,” Afable said.

He said “truth and restorative justice do prevail in our Armed Forces of the Philippines. You make us proud. There is hope for matuwid na daan.” (ASA)


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