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4 members of wanted Negros Oriental rob gang killed in shootout

STA. CATALINA, NEGROS ORIENTAL — The alleged leader and three other members of Negros Oriental’s most wanted robbery group were killed in a shootout with policemen in Barangay Poblacion, Sta. Catalina town on Sunday night.

Chief Insp. George Badon, Sta. Catalina police chief, on Monday identified the fatality as  Michael Garsula, leader of Garsula Robbery Group and suspect in the killing of businessman Demetrio “Pororoy” Larena III in Sibulan town on Oct. 20, 2011.

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Larena, 65, who owned a pawnshop chain, was driving his Pajero when armed men shot him in broad daylight along the national highway.

Also killed in the Sunday shootout were Bonifacio Catanos Jr. and two unidentified men, said Badon.

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Badon said at least 10 police operatives and Army soldiers flagged down the four men on board separate motorcycles at Sitio Cambungao, Poblacion, around 8 p.m. Sunday.

The law enforcers were to serve court warrants of arrest against Garsula, he said.

When Garsula and his group sensed what was to happen, they turned their motorcycles around, dropped to the ground and opened fire, Badon added.

A shootout followed and lasted for a few minutes.

Recovered from Garsula and his companions were a .45 pistol, a .38 revolver and an improvised shotgun.

The bodies were brought to Clarina  Funeral Homes in Sta. Catalina.

“The funeral parlor is already complaining about the bodies. No relative has claimed them yet. So we’re asking the local government to have them embalmed for three days before burying them, so that when family members decide to claim, they would still be able to see them for the last time,” Badon said.

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TAGS: Crimes, garsula robbery gang, michael garsula, Negros Oriental, Police, Regions, Shootout
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