Alleged backhoe operator in Maguindanao massacre arrested in North Cotabato



Maguindanao provincial Gov. Esmael Mangudadatu looks at mug shots of suspects during a press conference at Camp Crame police headquarters in suburban Quezon city, north of Manila, Philippines on Monday, Nov. 19, 2012. The Philippine Police said they will seek the help of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front, local government leaders and the National Union of Journalists of the Philippines to facilitate the speedy arrest of the 92 remaining at large suspects in the massacre of 57 people in southern Maguindanao province in 2009. Mangudadatu’s wife and relatives were among those killed. AP/Aaron Favila

COTABATO CITY, Philippines – Another suspect in the Maguindanao massacre fell into government hands in a remote village in North Cotabato, the police said.

The suspect, Bong Andal, a Maguindanaon and said to be the operator of the backhoe that dug the common graves of the massacre victims, was cornered in an entrapment operation by the Midsayap police, soldiers from the 40th Infantry Battalion and elements of the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao at about 10 a.m. Saturday, a report from the Midsayap police said.

Andal was described as an employee of the Maguindanao provincial government and driver of heavy equipment, backhoe included.

Vigilant villagers helped authorities by providing them with information and photos of Andal, who has been living in Barangay Kapinpilan since 2009, the report said.

While he did not resist arrest when presented with three warrants of arrest issued by a Quezon City Court, Andal denied involvement in the massacre, the report added.

He is now under custody of the CIDG-ARMM.
On Friday, another suspect in the massacre was also arrested as he mingled with families and friends of some victims during the 3rd year commemoration of the carnage in Sitio Masalay in Barangay Salamn in Ampatuan, Maguindanao.

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  • mangtom

    Arresting suspects doesn’t do any good unless you prosecute them. This justice system is a big joke.

  • R.Baylon – SEO Specialist

    How long do you need to prosecute them? 3 years? 5 years? 

  • randyaltarejos

    Prosecuting the suspects is only part and parcel of the whole process. When the suspects are meted penalties in the lower courts, they can still file and appeal with the Court of Appeals and then the Supreme Court. Rushing up the case without due process would mean the present administration would declare Martial Law, if only to put all the suspects behind bars for an indefinite period of time.

  • D_BystandeR

    The wife of a UNTV driver Editha Tiamson whose husband, Daniel, was one of the 58 massacre victims was quoted as saying in another news report related to this that she would like the massacre trial to proceed to give priority to the Ampatuans who are known as the masterminds rather than wait for the last suspect to get arrested. For her part she would be contented if she could witness within her lifetime the advance trial and sentencing of the masterminds and the trial of the “small fries” to follow later. She finds it more practical to see the masterminds undergo “extra speedy trial” to see them convicted despite their “billions of money” because she is afraid that according to a “probable estimate” basing on the present standing of the case it will be completed in 20 years. Another desperate prediction says it will take 200 years! And in one gathering where President Noynoy was the main speaker, right on the very day of the third anniversary of the Maguindanao massacre the media people noted that the President failed to mention that horrible Maguindanao massacre even if to mention it just in passing. Could this mean the President has now shown subconsciously that he is powerless to see the completion of the trial of  this Maguindanao massacre within his term as promised by him?

  • Hey_Dudes

    Well. for those blaming our justice system snail pace, why not blame our democracy instead where layers of lawyers whom suspected criminals can pay for their services to screw everything and tying up cases till eternity?  Do you think such criminals will live to see another day if we have a dictatorship police state?  So then, if you want to blame something, put the blame entirely on the kind of government system where we Filipinos continue to abuse.

  • Luz del Mundo

    Does anybody have a photo album of the Maguindanao Massacre suspects?  I guess it would greatly help locate them if such is made available on the net. Let’s test cyber-power!!!

  • darsmith

    His arrest (or should I say “coming-out”) after 3 years surely has a purpose.  He have been already coached on what to say in the court which will surely weaken the case against the Ampatuan monsters. 

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