Guns, grenades seized from NDF consultant, wife
SAN PEDRO CITY, Philippines – Government security forces seized guns and hand grenades from a consultant of the National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP) who was arrested in Liliw town in Laguna province.
Francisco “Frank” Fernandez, 71, also the spokesperson of the NDF in Negros, was the sixth of the 23-member NDF peace panel arrested since President Duterte terminated the peace talks in 2017.
Arrested with Fernandez was his wife, Cleofe Lagtapon, 66, whom police said served as the NDF’s regional deputy secretary for communications and for education in Negros, Cebu, Bohol, and Siquijor.
Another person arrested was Gee-Ann Perez, 20, allegedly an NDF staff member in the same region.
Laguna police director Sr. Supt. Eleazar Matta, in a text message, said they served an arrest warrant for murder issued by Judge Renato Muñoz of the 6th Judicial Regional Trial Court Branch 60 in Cadiz City.
On Sunday at about 5 a.m., a joint team of police and Army personnel team allegedly found three .45-caliber pistols, three hand grenades, and ammunition from the house where Fernandez had been staying in Barangay Calumpang on the boundary of Liliw and Nagcarlan towns in Laguna.
Police said Fernandez and Lagtapon were among the top most wanted persons that held key positions in the Communist Party of the Philippines.
In 2016, the military announced a P7.8 million bounty for the arrest of Fernandez. /cbb
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.