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NPA group denies getting guns from a police officer

BACOLOD CITY, Philippines — The Leonardo Panaligan Command (LPC) of the New People’s Army in central Negros island debunked allegations that it has been getting firearms from Senior Police Officer 1 Joshua Barile, who is now locked up in jail for illegal possession of firearms and explosives.

Ka JB Regalado, spokesperson of the LPC, in a statement dated October 10, dismissed as a big lie that Barile met with a certain Albert Lacerna, alias Ka Ambit—alleged to be the district commander of the NPA in central Negros—at a fastfood outlet on July this year, reportedly facilitated by a media personality.

Regalado clarified that it is neither the policy of the NPA to have a dialog with somebody in a public place nor allow somebody to act as a facilitator in talking to Barile, who the group deemed as an “enemy,” without any approval from the higherups.

He also pointed out that the name of Albert Lacerna, alias Ka Ambit, is not in the roster of the NPA operating in central Negros.

Barile was alleged to have been supplying guns, such as M16, M14 and AK 47 assault rifles, handguns and ammunition to the NPA, through Lacerna, including also an M72 LAW system of mini-bazooka. Regalado dismissed these allegations as “hearsay.”

The raid at the house of Barile last month yielded 31 assorted firearms, ammunition, four fragmentation grenades and a suspected shabu. Barile, however, declared that the three corroded fragmentation grenades and suspected shabu were “planted.”

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At the same time, Barile, who is the Firearms and Explosive Office section head of the Regional Civil Security Unit 18, explained that the seized firearms were placed under his custody, in line with the deactivation of the unit. (FREEMAN)

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