Suspected gunman in SAF 44 slay arrested in Cotabato City

Suspected gunman in SAF 44 slay arrested in Cotabato City
FILE - Army soldiers guard the wooden footbridge in Barangay Tukanalipao in Mamasapano, Maguindanao.
Philstar.com / John Unson, file

COTABATO CITY, Philippines — The police on Thursday arrested a suspect in the bloody Mamasapano clash five years ago, which left 44 police commandos dead.

Suspect Lakiman Klid Dawaling, 70, was arrested with a warrant issued by the Regional Trial Court Branch 16 in Cotabato City, according to Maguindanao provincial police director Col. Arnold Santiago.

Dawaling was cornered at past 2 p.m. Thursday in Shariff Aguak, Maguindanao by combined personnel of the Regional Police Office-Bangsamoro Autonomous Region and the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group.

He was tagged as one of the gunmen who killed 44 members of the police’s Special Action Force in an operation to capture Malaysian bomb maker Zulkifli bin Hir, alias Marwan, in Barangay Tukanalipao in Mamasapano, Maguindanao on Jan. 25, 2015.

The slain SAF men had just killed Marwan in a brief gunfight in nearby Pidsandawan area in Mamasapano. 

They were retreating towards Barangay Tukanalipao when they were attacked by Moro guerillas from different directions, sparking an 11-hour gunfight.

The carnage, being touted as the “Mamasapano incident,” resulted in the deaths of 44 SAF personnel, 15 Moro rebels and five civilians.


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