Bloody end for Alvin Flores Gang

PHILIPPINE NEWS SERVICE — AGENTS of the National Bureau of Investigation and the Philippine National Police on Thursday night ended the checkered career of notorious robber Alvin Flores and three of his men in a gunbattle in Cebu.

The end for the heavily-armed suspects known for posing as cops came at 8 p.m. Thursday when operatives of the NBI led by Ruel Lasala and the Directorate for Intelligence under Director Eugene Martin raided the their hideout at the Tripina Ceneca Compound in Barangay Staca, Compostela, Cebu.

The suspects ignored orders for them to surrender and immediately opened fire at the NBI and PNP agents who were forced to retaliate.

Aside from Flores, also killed were Ritchie Hijapon, Roger Sanchez and Mark Salamanca. A fifth member of the gang who was seriously wounded confessed involvement in the October 18 Greenbelt 5 heist in Makati City where one of their fellows was killed.

The Cebu encounter came barely four hours after a military official, a namesake of Flores, surfaced at the office of Northern Mindanao police director Chief Supt. Danilo Empedrad to clear his name.

According to Empedrad, Lt. Col. Alvin Flores denied any connection to the wanted Alvin Flores.

Empedrad said Lt. Col. Flores is assigned with the Army’s 104th Infantry Brigade operating in Lanao del Norte.

PNP spokesman, Chief Supt. Leonardo A. Espina said a massive intelligence operation undertaken by the PNP led to the neutralization of Alvin Flores and his gang mates. “The Directorate for Intelligence even furnished the NBI with information that led to the neutralization of the suspects,” he said.

PNP chief Director General Jesus Verzosa earlier formed a Special Investigation Task Group to spearhead the hunt for Flores who was tagged as the leader of the fake policemen who stormed the Rolex Store inside Greenbelt 5.

Verzosa said they expect incidents of robbery–holdups to go down with the killing of Flores. He said a fifth suspect who was wounded and captured by lawmen during Thursday night’s shootout is cooperating with investigators.

“It’s unfortunate he (Flores) got killed since he could have given us more information,” he said.

Verzosa said the P510,000 reward for the capture of Flores will go to an informant whose name was withheld for security reasons.

The P500,000 was set by the Department of Interior and Local Government while the P10,000 was given by Lt.Col. Alvin Flores.

The body of Domingo who is said to be facing a string of criminal charges including murder and theft was claimed by his widow and brother Tuesday in a Pasay City funeral parlor.

Domingo, a native of Isabela province, was described as a former New People’s Army rebel who joined but was later dismissed from the Citizens Armed Forces Geographical Unit.