By Priam F. Nepomuceno
MANILA, Aug. 7 (PNA) — The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) on Friday formally handed the reward money to civilian confidential informants who aided police and military operatives in the neutralization of eight ranking rebel and terrorist leaders.
The reward money was handed at 3: 30 p.m. at the OJ2 multi-purpose hall, ISAFP compound, Camp Aguinaldo, Quezon City.
Handing out the cash rewards, which ranged from Php 150,000 to Php 10 million, was AFP chief-of-staff Gen. Hernando DCA Iriberri.
Col. Noel Detoyato, AFP public affairs office chief, said the cash awards were in recognitions of the informantscontributions which resulted in the capture of New People’s Army (NPA) and Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) leaders between 2011 to 2014.
Among the NPA leaders arrested was Benito Tiamzon who was arrested last March 22, 2014 for his involvement in various heinous crimes including the death of an estimated 300 former NPA members in the purging of their ranks dubbed the “Inopacan Massacre.”
Vital tips from these informants also led to the capture of ASG member Andulgapar Imambakal who was wanted for kidnapping and multiple murders.
Imambakal was responsible for the abduction of a priest, 15 teachers and a policeman in Isabela, Basilan, murder of students of Special Forces Operational Course in Lantawan, Basilan, murder of seven members of the Scout Rangers during the attack at Puno Mahadji, and murder of 14 Marine troops in an ambush in Albarka, Basilan.
Other rebels who were arrested included Dionisio Almonte who was responsible for the murder of two police officials and a hostage of another policeman in the raid of Roxas Municipal Police Station, Roxas, Palawan; and ASG member Algaber Said who was wanted for kidnapping of a priest, teachers and students from Claret High School and Tumahubong Elementary School in Basilan.
The informants also helped in the capture of ASG cohort/Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) member Caharudin Silongan Lacman who was wanted for murder, multiple frustrated murder and multiple attempted murder and involvement in illegal drugs and gun-running activities.
He was also known to have close links with notorious bomb expert Basit Usman.
Detoyato said that their informants also provided vital information in locating the whereabouts of NPA members Domingo Javier (wanted for murder and arson), Ricardo Reyes (wanted for massacre of Ligiw family in Dumengley, Abra, murder of five policemen and a CAFGU member, and kidnapping and serious illegal detention of two other policemen during the attack and burning of Municipal Hall and Police Station of San Juan, Abra); and Brandon Magranga (wanted for murder of seven military personnel under 52nd Division Reconnaissance Compnay in Bontoc, Mountain Province).
All of these NPA members were killed while resisting arrest. (PNA)