Slain kidnap suspect in Zamboanga Sibugay tagged in 12 abductions of Filipinos, foreigners
MANILA — A man who was tagged as the leader of a kidnap-for-ransom group based in Zamboanga Sibugay province and who was killed by a joint police and military team on Sunday, had been tagged in a dozen cases of abduction.
Police said Waning Abdulsalam led a notorious kidnap-for-ransom group that was responsible for the abduction of some 12 victims in separate instances.
Tan said these included the abductions of three teachers in Zamboanga Sibugay in 2009, Irish priest Michael Sinott in 2009, and Australian national Warren Rodwell in Ipil, Zamboanga Sibugay in 2011.
Sinnott was released after a month through the intercession of a larger Muslim rebel group while Rodwell spent 15 months in captivity and was only freed after ransom was paid.
Abdulsalam died as law enforcers tried to apprehend him in Barangay Singkilon, Naga town in Zamboanga Sibugay.
Maj. Filemon Tan, Western Mindanao Command spokesperson, said a joint team from the 102nd Brigade of the Philippine Army’s 1st Infantry Division and the police carried out the arrest.
But Abdulsalam engaged in a gunfight with the arresting team and was subsequently shot dead, police said.
Tan said the suspect’s remains were brought to a hospital in Zamboanga Sibugay for proper disposition.
In 2011, Abdulsalam was reported to have been killed in a military operation but local authorities later learned that his brother, Kidi Abdulsalam, not Waning, was the one killed by soldiers. SFM
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