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NPA top official falls in Laguna

(The Philippine Star) - January 28, 2015 - 4:28pm

MANILA, Philippines - The second highest leader of the New People’s Army (NPA) in Bicol was arrested by security forces in Laguna on Tuesday.

Maj. Angelo Guzman, spokesman of the Armed Forces Southern Luzon Command, said communist leader Reynaldo Hugo was nabbed by police and military personnel in Cabuyao town at 10:14 p.m.

Hugo is facing multiple murder and frustrated murder charges and was arrested by the authority of an arrest warrant issued by a local court in San Jose, Camarines Sur.

Guzman said Hugo is an operations officer and member of the rebels’ executive committee in Bicol.

“Reynaldo Hugo dictates the operational tempo of the NPA there,” Guzman said.

Armed Forces Southern Luzon Command chief Maj. Gen. Ricardo Visaya said Hugo’s arrest would significantly affect the insurgents’ operations in the region.

"Now that they are disarrayed with the arrest of Reynaldo Hugo, this is a good opportunity for us to further push our focused military operations there," Visaya said in a statement.

Guzman said government troops arrested three ranking NPA members in Bicol last year namely Mario dela Cruz, a regional secretary; Sylvestre Layones, executive committee member, and Elias Florentino Pura, secretary of the communist unit in Sorsogon.

Bicol is one of the areas in the country with huge concentration of communist rebels. The strength of the communist rebellion stood at 3,200 as of the end of 2014. – Alexis Romero with a report from Leslie Anne Mahusay

ALEXIS ROMERO ANGELO GUZMAN ARMED FORCES SOUTHERN LUZON COMMAND BICOL CAMARINES SUR ELIAS FLORENTINO PURA GUZMAN LESLIE ANNE MAHUSAY MAJ REYNALDO HUGO
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