PNP chief orders probe into Ozamis gang leaders’ deathBy Jamie Elona
MANILA, Philippines—Philippine National Police (PNP) chief, Director General Alan Purisima, has ordered an independent investigation into the death of two recaptured robbery gang leaders while in police custody in San Pedro Laguna.
“As you know lives have been threatened and lost. And as such, the Chief PNP has already directed the Internal Affairs Service to conduct their own independent investigation,” Senior Superintendent Reuben Theodore Sindac, PNP-Public Information Office chief said Tuesday.
Ricky “Kambal” Cadavero, 36, who is the identified leader of the notorious Ozamis crime syndicate, and his trusted henchman, Wilfredo “Kulot” Panogalinga Jr., were killed early evening Monday, hours after Interior Secretary Mar Roxas announced they were being turned over to the Bureau of Corrections.
Their turnover was, however, delayed after it was decided that they needed to attend the scheduled inquest proceeding at the Cavite Prosecutors Office.
Chief Superintendent Benito Estipona, Calabarzon regional director, on Monday said the convoy carrying Cadavero and Panogalinga was traveling at the vicinity of Barangay (village) San Antonio, San Pedro, Laguna, when armed men aboard a motorcycle fired at the van they were riding in while traversing Magsaysay Highway.
He said armed men on two other motorcycles were also tailing the van carrying Cadavero and Panolinga, and another vehicle of the police.
Estipona said Cadavero and Panogalinga then tried to grab the firearms of two of their six police escorts.
Roxas had earlier ordered the PNP and the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology to look into the “miraculous” escape of some high-profile criminals from state prisons, including Cadavero.
Cadavero was recaptured by the PNP in Dasmarinas City, Cavite, last Friday, seven months after he bolted the tightly guarded New Bilibid Prison in Muntinlupa City.
Cadavero is involved in several robbery incidents of money changers and banks in Metro Manila, including the incident at Alabang Town Center in Muntinlupa in 2011.
Panogalinga, on the other hand, is said to be a key suspect in the shooting of American Robert Armstrong during a robbery at a 7 Eleven convenience store in Malate, Manila, last September 2012.
The Ozamis group is also believed to have been involved helping three Chinese drug convicts flee in Cavite last February. With a report from Philippine Daily Inquirer