QC court prepares criminal cases vs suspected Indonesian terrorist
(Updated 4:43 p.m., Nov. 2) The Quezon City Prosecutor’s Office on Thursday submitted for resolution the string of criminal cases filed against an Indonesian national allegedly affiliated with the Maute terrorist group, barely a day after he was caught trying to escape the war-torn Marawi City.
Muhammad Ilham Syahputra, 22, native of North Sumatra, Indonesia, underwent inquest proceedings for violation of Republic Act 134 (Rebellion), Republic Act 10591 (Comprehensive Firearms and Ammunition Regulatory Act), Republic Act 9516 (Explosive Act), and Republic Act 9851 (International Humanitarian Law).
Deputy City Prosecutor Alfredo Agcaoili and Assistant State Prosecutor Rodan Parrocha conducted the proceedings based on the complaint filed by the Philippine National Police.
Based on the complaint sheet, joint elements of the Marawi City Police Station, Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao, and Provincial Investigation and Detective Management Branch (PIDMB) of Lanao del Sur Provincial Police Office led by Sr. Supt. John Gano Guyguyon arrested Syahputra at around 7 a.m. on Wednesday at Barangay Luksa Datu while authorities were conducting clearing operations.
Seized from Syahputra were one .45-caliber pistol and one magazine, seven live ammunitions, one hand grenade, one Apple mini tablet, an Indonesian passport and two identification cards under the name Khoirul Hidaya, 10 pieces of P1,000 bill, 15 pieces P500 bill, two pieces P100 bills, and many other foreign money.
Initial reports said the suspect was captured after he was spotted swimming across the Lanao Lake near the battle zone.
Authorities said Syahputra, who speaks Tagalog fluently, had claimed during interrogation that there were at least 39 Maute stragglers still within Marawi City.
Guyguyon said that the suspect also admitted to being an IS militant who came to the Philippines in 2015, and even participated in various operations.
Foreign fighters were believed to have fought side-by-side with local terrorists in the past five months of fighting.
Combat operations in Marawi were officially terminated last week as Abu Sayyaf leader Isnilon Hapilon and rebel leader Omar Maute were killed by government troops. /jpv
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