La Trinidad, Benguet –An arms cache suspected to belong to a warlord whom police did not name yet, was seized at a barangay chairman’s home in Lagayan town in Abra.
This after an aggressive drive versus lawlessness in Abra has been reaping fruits with three drug peddlers also cornered before the arms cache haul.
At least 11 high-powered guns including assault weapons and ammunitions were hauled in barangay Pulot, Lagayan town Tuesday morning.
Abra police director Senior Superintendent Albertito Garcia, who is leading an elite police group called “Abra Shield” recently instituted to arrest the rising lawlessness in the northern province said operatives on orders of Judge Renato Pinlac, the Acting Executive Judge of Branch 25 of the Regional Trial Court, of San Carlos City, Pangasinan seized in the house of barangay Pulot, Lagayan chairman Leonard Jimenez Donato a Winchester M-14 rifle bearing serial number 11208 with inserted magazine and loaded with 10 rounds of ammunition; an Elisco M-16A1 assault rifle with defaced serial number with inserted short magazine and loaded with 11 bullets; another Elisco M-16A1 assault rifle with tampered serial number RP155451 inserted with a short magazine and loaded with 11 bullets; a Norinco caliber .45 pistol bearing serial number 196200 inserted with 10 rounder magazine and loaded with eight bullets; one American Classic Caliber .45 pistol without serial number inserted with a magazine and loaded with six rounds of ammunition; six long magazines for M16 rifle; one short magazine for the same rifle; 175 rounds of ammunition also for M16; and one black bandolier also for M16 rifle.
Policemen also raided the barangay tanod Joy Ban-o Bersamira and seized an Elisco M-16A1 assault rifle bearing serial number RP 108962 inserted with short magazine and loaded with 19 rounds of bullets and two long magazines loaded with 44 bullets.
While policemen also seized from the house of farmer Rodolfo Concepcion Bernal, a homemade caliber .45 pistol without serial number; one bullet for caliber .45; one bullet for 7.62 mm rifle; two black homemade leather pistol holsters; and one black magazine pouch for calibre .45, while a caliber 38 revolver without markings and bullets was seized from the home of Peter Boling Donato.
Authorities also seized a Karatay gauge 12 shotgun with firearm license number 8566514 which will expire on September 25, 2015 was taken at the residence of villager Joven Donato Sindon.
All of them except Sindon were arrested, said Cordillera police director Chief Supt. Isagani Nerez.
This while barangay tanod Rey Tolosa Atayde, 40, resident of sitio Calumbuyan, also in Pulot, Lagayan, Abra gave up to policemen an M-14 assault rifle with serial number 1461054 inserted with one magazine and loaded with 14 bullets while Barangay Sabnangan, Luba town Chairman Rufino P. Buenafe turned-in a homemade single shot cal. 45 (paltik) with no marking.
Chief Superintendent Nerez further policemen to sustain this momentum and go after illegal firearms in both urban centers and the countryside, stressing, “we must continue to hit hard on these criminals who are behind the distribution and possession of illegal firearms.”
Over the weekend, operatives also of “Abra Shield” arrested two for illegal drug possession in Zone 1, Bangued. Rex Joseph Bulos Sundiam, 24, from Brgy. Sinapangan, Bangued, and Junalyn Taeza Ramilo, 23, from Zone 3, Bangued, were tipped off by a citizen stating that the suspects were on board a black single motorcycle XRM who have just bought shabu from South Calaba, Bangued, and were heading towards Bangued town plaza.
Operatives intercepted the motorcycle of the suspects and found one sachet of suspected dried marijuana leaves; one improvised tooter and two cellular phones.
Operatives also arrested a farmer last Friday afternoon in his own home in Barangay San Antonio, Bangued. Abner Bonete Ducayag, 20, sold two heat sealed plastic sachets of shabu to one of the operatives along the Abra river banks.
Nerez said their all-out drive versus drug syndicates in the highland Cordillera region will be further pushed to higher levels.
Since the start of “Abra Shield”, prompted by the brutal killing of former journalist Jacinto Turqueza more than a month ago and the alleged spike of lawlessness, and resurgence of warlordism in the province, several criminals have been arrested and are now facing charges.***Artemio A. Dumlao***