Cops nab alleged NPA leader inside hospital in San Juan
MANILA, Philippines–An alleged leader of the New People’s Army (NPA) wanted for multiple murder was arrested by the police while seeking treatment at a hospital in San Juan City.
Brig. Gen. Debold Sinas, acting director of the National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO), confirmed in a press briefing Tuesday the arrest of Jaime Padilla, who was captured during the serving of a warrant at about 7:30 p.m. Monday at the Cardinal Santos Medical Center.
The suspect, allegedly the spokesperson of the NPA Central Committee and is aged over 60 years old, was confined in a private room for hypertension when he was arrested, according to Sinas.
Three other persons identified as Rey Rafa, Jefren Banjawan, and Kay Ann Trogon who were “guarding” him were also collared.
Sinas said the police will file a case of harboring a wanted person against the people “securing” Padilla. Authorities are also checking the background of the three persons and if they have any standing warrant of arrest.
No firearm was recovered from the suspects when they were arrested, unlike in previous apprehensions of other ranking NPA leaders, said Sinas.
Police are currently locating the vehicles of the suspects to check if it carries any firearm or any related subversive documents.
According to Sinas, the military was able to trace the whereabouts of Padilla when he traveled from Calabarzon and Mimaropa regions.
Padilla’s warrant was issued by the San Jose, Occidental Mindoro Regional Trial Court Branch 46. Sinas said the police are checking information that the suspect’s arrest has a reward of P4.4 million.
Aside from the murder charge, the alleged communist leader also has an arrest warrant for kidnapping. Police have yet to disclose information on when the warrant, as well as that for four counts of murder, were issued and its related incidents.
Sinas said that before the arrest was made, Padilla was already preparing to leave the hospital. He added that Padilla’s doctor gave permission for him to be brought in police custody since he was already getting well.
“Kaya minadali ang pagpunta ng operatives natin sa San Juan kaya nahuli siya sa akto [That’s why our operatives immediately came and he was arrested],” he said.
Police are checking the name used by Padilla to be admitted to the hospital and since when he has been admitted for treatment.
The suspects are now detained at the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group – National Capital Region Office at Camp Crame.
Edited by JPV
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