Assault rifles seized in Sulu mayor’s resort | Inquirer News

Assault rifles seized in Sulu mayor’s resort

/ 12:01 AM December 13, 2014

ZAMBOANGA CITY—The military seized a cache of firearms during a raid on Wednesday in a resort owned by a mayor of a town in Sulu province and turned this over to the police, triggering allegations from the mayor of a warrantless search of his property.

Colonel Alan Arrojado, head of the police-military anticrime unit Joint Task Group Sulu, said on the  phone that the military wanted the firearms tested as these could have been used in criminal activities.

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The weapons were seized from the resort owned by Saripuddin Jikiri, the mayor of    Indanan  town.

Major Edilberto Aramponi, spokesperson for the task group, said the military received a tip that guns were being kept in the resort.

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“After we received information that there are firearms in the said property, we conducted the search and we recovered these firearms,” he said.

Aramponi said the cache consisted of M-4, M-203, M-16 and M-14 assault rifles and two handguns.

Senior Superintendent Noel Armilla, officer in charge of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao police office, said the guns had been turned over to the  police.

“There was a chase. The armed men abandoned their weapons,” Armilla said.

He said the mayor denied owning the firearms.

Jikiri, in a separate phone interview, said the guns “belonged to my security personnel” and members of village militias securing projects in his area.

“They (soldiers) took those firearms without proper coordination, there was not even a search warrant,” he said.

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Jikiri said the guns were licensed and “the police can vouch for that.”

He said he would sue the military for the raid. Julie Alipala, Inquirer Mindanao

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TAGS: Firearms, Indanan mayor, Joint Task Group Sulu, Saripuddin Jikiri
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