Three killed, five arrested in separate operations vs crime groups used by politicians: PNP
Three people were killed while five were arrested from two alleged organized crime groups reportedly hired by politicians as private armed groups, the Philippine National Police ( PNP) said on Monday.
In a press briefing, PNP Director General Oscar Albayalde said the Anti-Kidnapping Group in separate operations in northern and central Luzon arrested five members of the Peralta Group while San Pablo police shot three members of the Alvero Group dead in an encounter.
“These two groups both provide services as private armed groups to some politicians and their activities are sustained by proceeds from illegal drugs and kidnapping for ransom,” Albayalde said.
Albayalde said he cannot reveal the politicians who hired these groups.
"As of this time, we cannot divulge the names of those politicians. We have intelligence information that needs to be confirmed and validated. We cannot just reveal the names of the politicians especially with the Peralta group," he said.
He identified the arrested members as Dennis Matias, Mary Ann Mallari, Raymond Dequina, John Lana, and Jackie Lou Isidro.
The group is involved in "a long list of assassinations in Nueva Ecija, Bulacan, Tarlac, Metro Manila, and Cagayan Valley", said Albayalde.
The group's leader, Ricardo Peralta and members are still at large. He and former Gapan Mayor Ernesto Natividad is being accused for killing Ericson and Ebertson Pascual in a Nueva Ecija cockpit in 2006
"He was arrested one time or he surrendered one time in Central Luzon but then after that, he went again to his activities," Albayalde said.
Killed among the Alvero Group were its leader, Christopher Alain Alvero and two unidentified members
Alvero is listed in the drug watchlist of the City Anti-Drug Abuse Council of San Pablo City as a High-Value
"These two successful operations, in no small measure, will lessen possible election-related violence in the forthcoming 2019 national elections by neutralizing private armed groups and taking away instruments of violence used for political purposes," he said. Ella Dionisio/DMS