By PNA and U.S. News Agency / Asian
Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) operatives arrested a total of 174 individuals wanted by the law during nationwide operations last April.
Director Samuel D. Pagdilao Jr., CIDG commander, reported that relentless campaigns against organized crime groups resulted in the neutralization of nine groups and the arrest of 71 of its members, among others.
One of these groups was the Alih illegal drugs syndicate in Zamboanga City whose six members were arrested following a botched attempt to rescue their leader, Nadzul Alih, who was arrested earlier. Alih’s group, aside from being involved in illegal drugs activities, was also tagged in the killing of former Mayor Najib Madiza of Maimbung, Sulu.
Also neutralized last month were the members of the Ramitex Gang in Tagbilaran City, Bohol, who were involved in illegal gambling; the Ugadan Robbery Group of Tarlac City; the Basitil Group of Bukidnon, who were involved in carjacking and murder; the Uwat Group in Zamboanga who were involved in human trafficking acts; the syndicate involved in pilferage of diesel fuel based in Dasmarinas City, Cavite; the Camacho Group of Ilocos Sur, who were known for their involvement in illegal drugs activities, and the Dan Muslim Group engaged in robbery hold-up activities in Pampanga.
Pagdilao said that for the month of April, the CIDG arrested a total of 35 fugitives, three of them included in the list of “Most Wanted Persons” at the national level.
Among them were Reynante Gamara, the secretary of the Communist Party of the Philippines-Metro Manila Party Committee, who was implicated in the murder of a rebel returnee and a soldier in Mauban, Quezon; Maguindanao massacre suspects Zacaria Akil and Sonny Pindi who were arrested in Cotabato City; Romy Vidal, No. 1 most wanted person in Ilocos Region who was arrested in Balaoan, La Union; Janet Tangonan, most wanted person in Ilocos Norte who was charged with large-scale fraud; Romeo Mercado of Lipa City, Batangas, who is listed as No. 2 most wanted there; and Ilocos Sur No. 2 most wanted for illegal drugs offense, Estrealla Palacpac, of Vigan City.
During the same month, Pagdilao said that the CIDG also confiscated a total of 86 loose firearms, of which 59 were classified as high-powered, six explosives and more than 3,000 rounds of ammunition.
Also arrested were 41 persons for illegal possession of firearms.
Pagdilao said that in the arrests of these wanted persons and the confiscation of loose firearms, the CIDG’s Community Investigative Support volunteers played a big role in helping the CIDG carry out its mandate, especially in the implementation of its flagship projects “OPLAN Salikop,” “Pagtugis” and “Paglalansag Omera.”
Also in April, Pagdilao said a total of 237 criminal cases were investigated by the CIDG. Except for one, all of the cases have been filed in court, which yielded a crime solution efficiency of 99.57 percent.
Out of the 22 heinous crimes that the CIDG investigated last month, 21 of them were already filed in court, he added.