Ranking Sayyaf member nabbed in Quezon City
An alleged high-ranking officer of a subgroup of the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) was arrested in September at Barangay Batasan Hills, Quezon City, police announced on Friday.
The suspect, Ibrahim Lambog Mullo, 26, had been involved in armed encounters against government forces in Patikul, Sulu province, after he joined the ASG in 2017, according to the Quezon City Police District (QCPD).
He was arrested around 7 p.m. on Sept. 27 in an operation conducted by the QCPD and the Armed Forces of the Philippines Intelligence Group after officers received a tip from a civilian who had seen the suspect on the corner of Ilang-Ilang Street and Commonwealth Avenue.
Mullo was apprehended with an unlicensed .45-caliber pistol and sling bag that contained a fragmentation grenade, police said.
The QCPD added that prior to the call from the concerned citizen, intelligence information had already bared that a suspected ASG member was in the Batasan area.
Arrived in January
Police said Mullo had arrived in Metro Manila in January along with a certain Arnel Flores Cabinto and Feliciano Mañas Sulayao Jr., both of whom were arrested on June 15 in Quezon City for their alleged involvement in the rebellion in Mindanao.
The QCPD said Mullo denied being in Metro Manila to plot any acts of terrorism, saying he had just moved here to attend to his wife, who had recently given birth.
Mullo also alleged that he had cut ties with the ASG, where he was a member of a subgroup known as Ajang-Ajang and reported to a leader known as “Pading.”
“According to him, he was able to leave the ASG in Sulu, after asking permission from Pading to allow him to have a short vacation in Zamboanga City with his wife,” the QCPD said in a statement.
“Thereafter, he never returned to Sulu and decided to go to Manila instead,” it added.
Police Col. Ronnie Montejo, QCPD chief, conceded that they did not have direct evidence linking Mullo to any acts of terrorism, but said his arrest would be a boon to their efforts to pin down other ASG officials.
Nonetheless, Mullo will face charges of violating Republic Act No. 10591, or the Comprehensive Firearms and Ammunition Regulation Act, and the unlawful and illegal possession of explosive under RA 9516.
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