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2 Surigao cops taken by NPA rebels

Police Officers 2 Alfredo Degamon Jr. and John Paul Doverte of the Placer police station were patrolling the highway in Barangay Bad-as at about 1:40 p.m. when they were taken by an undetermined number of rebels. File

MANILA, Philippines —  Suspected New People’s Army (NPA) rebels snatched two police officers in Surigao del Norte on Monday.

Police Officers 2 Alfredo Degamon Jr. and John Paul Doverte of the Placer police station were patrolling the highway in Barangay Bad-as at about 1:40 p.m. when they were taken by an undetermined number of rebels.

The police officers were forced into a van that sped off toward the mountains in Barangay Mabini.

The two Starex vans used by the rebels for their getaway were recovered in Sitio Alimatok.

A crisis committee was created to negotiate for the release of the two policemen.

Maj. Ezra Balagtey, Eastern Mindanao Command spokesman, said soldiers of the 30th Infantry Battalion (IB) and their police counterparts are conducting search and rescue operations.

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The NPA has yet to issue a statement on the kidnapping.

5 rebels nabbed

Meanwhile, NPA rebels Ariel Aggabao, 23; Daryll Villareal and John Paul San Carlos were arrested at a police checkpoint in Sitio Mapangal, Barangay Sanguit, Dupax del Sur, Nueva Vizcaya on Monday.

A caliber .45 and 9mm pistols, three rifle grenades and various types of ammunition were recovered from the rebels, Chief Superintendent Robert Quenery, Cagayan Valley police director, said.

Jerwin Floria, 20, a resident of Barangay Hagupit, Santiago, Agusan del Norte, was resting in a nipa hut in Barangay Malinao, Gabaldon, Nueva Ecija when he was nabbed on Sunday.

Floria initially told police that he was lost, but admitted when questioned by soldiers belonging to the 56th IB that he is an NPA rebel based in Mindanao.

In Misamis Occidental, Antonio Anding, alias Commander Brix, former secretary of the NPA’s Front Committee Joji in Western Mindanao, was collared at his hideout in Barangay National, Jimenez.

The arrest was based on warrants for murder, rebellion, frustrated murder, attempted murder and robbery.

2 trucks burned

In Agusan del Norte, around 30 communist guerrillas set up a road blockade in Sitio Banga, Barangay Cuyago, Jabonga and burned two trucks yesterday.

The 10-wheeler truck and a delivery truck packed with cigarettes that were set on fire are owned by JJBA Enterprises and PMFTC Enterprises, respectively.

The rebels reportedly ordered the drivers of the trucks to pull over while traveling from Surigao City to Butuan. – Emmanuel Tupas, Ben Serrano, Jaime Laude, Raymund Catindig, Ric Sapnu, Victor Martin, Roel Pareño

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