arrested in 10 days of gunban in EV
By RPCRD, Police Regional
October 9, 2013
CAMP SEC. KANGLEON, Palo,
Leyte – At least 23 persons have been arrested in Eastern Visayas
during the first ten days since the gun ban was implemented by the
authorities for the upcoming barangay elections later this month,
according to figures from the Police Regional Office 8 (PRO8).
“All the 23 violators are
civilians and they are now facing charges for firearms ban violation
apart from additional criminal charges if they committed other
offenses,” PCSupt. Elmer R. Soria, PRO8 director informed.
He added that police units
in the region have confiscated a total 13 firearms, four of which are
high-powered, three low-powered and six are homemade guns.
“Apart from firearms, 14
assorted bladed weapons and 65 assorted ammunitions were also seized,”
the police official further said.
The arrests were made
through the implementation of checkpoints in strategic places,
implementation of search warrants and confiscation during arrests of
wanted persons, police response and intelligence-driven operations.
The latest to be arrested in
the region were couple Eric Mendoza, 43 and Carmen Balotaolo, 42, in a
manhunt operation early Wednesday morning at Brgy. Mantahan in Maasin
Balotalo was arrested based
in an arrest warrant for violation of Republic Act 9165 or the
Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002.
During the arrest, the duo
was caught in the act of segregating and repacking suspected
methamphetamine hydrochloride or “shabu”.
Aside from three sachets of
suspected “shabu” granules and several drug paraphernalia, one unit
.38 caliber Smith and Wesson revolver loaded with five ammunitions and
one unit .22 caliber magnum Black Widow revolver, both without serial
numbers, and 11 ammunitions for .22 caliber were confiscated in plain
view by the arresting policemen.
Since September 28, all
police line units nationwide have aggressively implemented the 45-day
firearms ban wherein until November 12, no person shall bear, carry or
transport firearms or other deadly weapons in public places, even if
licensed to possess or carry the same, unless authorized in writing by
the Commission on Elections.
This is also the second time
this year that government authorities are imposing a nationwide
gun-ban which was first implemented by the authorities last January 13
up to June 12 for the mid-term local and national elections held last
During the 6-month gun ban
in connection with the midterm elections, the PRO8 had arrested 186
violators and confiscated 155 firearms assorted firearms and filed 151
criminal charges in different courts throughout the region.
implementation of the gun ban will curb the possible outbreak of
violence for the upcoming village elections on October 28,” Soria
8ID partners with Red
Cross and Generika drugstore in bloodletting and medical mission
October 9, 2013
CAMP LUKBAN, Catbalogan
City, Samar – The 8th Infantry Division, Philippine Army
simultaneously conducted Bloodletting and Medical Mission activities
in partnership with health stakeholders on October 5, 2013 at
The 8ID partnered with Philippine National Red Cross (PNRC) Tacloban
City for the bloodletting activity held at Headquarters, 8th Infantry
Division in Brgy Maulong, Catbalogan City; and likewise partnered with
Generika Drugstore for the medical mission conducted at Poblacion,
PNRC Tacloban City was the recipient of 21,500 cc of blood from the 47
soldier/donors; while Generika Drugstore, with 8ID medical doctors and
nurses, serviced the medical needs of 296 patients, 55 of whom were
The Army division in Eastern Visayas will continue to nurture its
partnership with PNRC and Generika Drugstore to help address the gaps
on health-related concerns that cannot be attended to by the local
government units due to limited resources.
BGen Jet B. Velarmino AFP, Commander of 8th Infantry Division said,
“The 8ID also supports and will continue to assist the private sector,
corporate entities and public organizations which are cognizant of
their social responsibility and undertake programs and initiatives
beneficial to our people. We share their desire and commitment to help
our less fortunate countrymen improve their health well being.”
PRO8 all set for
By RPCRD, Police Regional Office 8
October 7, 2013
CAMP SEC. KANGLEON, Palo,
Leyte – The Police Regional Office 8 (PRO8) assured that all
security preparations and operations are now underway as some 2.6
million voters in Eastern Visayas troops to polling centers for the
October 28 barangay elections.
PRO8 director PCSupt. Elmer
R. Soria informed that weeks prior to the start of the election
period, he already issued the PRO8 Command Memorandum Circular No.
23/2013 “SAFE 2013– Alpha–Waray” setting forth the security measures
to be undertaken by police territorial units in relation to the
“The circular calls for
intensified intelligence-driven law enforcement operations and
strengthened police-community partnership to preclude violence and
ensure order before, during and after the elections,” Soria said.
He added that said directive
also set the policy guidelines for the dynamic cooperation with the
Commission on Elections (Comelec) and Armed Forces of the Philippines
(AFP) through the Joint Security Control Center (JPSCC).
“Our partnership with our
military counterparts aims to thwart attempts by the Eastern Visayas
Regional Party Committee to take advantage of the situation to raise
funds through extortion activities and expand their foothold into
peaceful communities,” the police official disclosed.
Among the proactive security
measures is the strict implementation of a 45-day gun ban that so far
resulted in the arrest of 13 violators, confiscation of eight
firearms, eight bladed weapons and 41 assorted ammunitions; and filing
of charges in court for violations of the Omnibus Election Code.
During Monday’s staff
conference, Soria reiterated his directive to unit commanders to make
an honest-to-goodness assessment of the situation in the barangay
level so that appropriate measures will be initiated attuned to the
security needs on the ground.
The police regional chief
further directed his men to sustain police presence through mobile
patrolling and intensify checkpoint operations in strategic areas.
He likewise ordered the
organization of trackers team to run after wanted criminals especially
in areas having intense political rivalries between candidates and
“We will strengthen the
conduct of Focused Police Operations against all factors that may
affect the success of the elections,” he assured.
in Catbalogan no impact on brgy polls - PRO8
By RPCRD, Police Regional
October 4, 2013
CAMP KANGLEON, Palo,
Leyte – The two shooting incidents recorded in Catbalogan City the
past days will not affect the conduct of a peaceful barangay elections
in the city and the entire Samar province, said the region’s top
Police Regional Office 8
(PRO8) director PCSupt. Elmer R. Soria assured that the recent gun
attacks victimizing a former and an incumbent village official are
isolated incidents as he ordered a thorough investigation and manhunt
operations against the suspects in the recent case that transpired
Thursday evening resulting in the killing of a village councilor.
“Pending the result of the
investigation, thorough assessment and the establishment of the
motive, we cannot consider these yet as election-related incidents,”
At around 6:20 p.m.
Thursday, Narciso Lagbo, 46, was gunned down by two unidentified
assailants while waiting for his wife, Daisy, outside Charito’s
Delights Fastfood along San Roque street.
Victim sustained gunshot
wounds at the back of his neck and lower back hip that went through
his abdomen resulting in his direct death.
Suspects fled towards the
Catbalogan public market while responding policemen recovered four
fired cartridges, two .45 and two 9mm calibers, and two slugs at the
Lagbo is a first termer
councilor of Brgy. Tagbayaon in Jiabong, Samar, some 15 kilometers
from the city.
Meanwhile, the police have
filed Monday murder charges against Reymund Bañar at the Office of the
City under NPS number VIII-08-INQ-131-00432.
Bañar was positively
identified by witnesses as one of the two gunmen who shot ex-chairman
Filomeno Cabarriban of Brgy. Lagundi in Catbalogan City at past 11:00
Bañar, 21, was arrested a
few hours after the incident in a manhunt operation by a joint police
team from the Regional Special Operations Group 8 (RSOG 8) and
Catbalogan police station in his hide-out situated at the outskirts of
Lagundi village, some two kilometers from the crime scene.
Notwithstanding the recent
shootings, the police official assured that the incidents will not
affect peace and order situation and peaceful conduct of the elections
in the region.
Soldiers score anew
in Northern Samar; NPAs surrender 2 firearms
By DPAO, 8ID PA
October 4, 2013
CAMP LUKBAN, Catbalogan
City, Samar – On October 3, 2013 troops of 34th Infantry Battalion
under Lt Col Rodrigo Ilustrisimo, encountered ten (10) NPA members at
Sitio Canunghan, Brgy Osmeńa, Palapag, Northern Samar.
Before the encounter,
concerned civilians reported the presence of around 10 armed NPAs that
were planning to stage an ambush against the government forces
conducting Bayanihan Team activities in Sitio Canunghan. The troops
immediately acted on the report resulting to a firefight with the NPA
insurgents with no casualty on the government side.
In a related incident, a
certain Jayson Francisco Lucban (aka Bunso and Jay) and Rosemarie
Moreno Cadajas (aka LJ, Aira and Ai-Ai), both NPA members, voluntarily
surrendered to 20th Infantry Battalion under Lt Col Rey Anthony M
Tumaliuan and brought with them two (2) Caliber 45 pistols with two
(2) magazines on October 2, 2013.
Under the AFP Guns For Peace
Program, each of them will receive P25,000.00 for each pistol
surrendered and is entitled to receive P50,000.00 livelihood package
and P15,000.00 immediate assistance from the Office of the
Presidential Assistant for Peace Process (OPAPP) under its
Comprehensive Local Integration program (CLIP).
BGen Jet B. Velarmino AFP,
Commander of 8th Infantry Division, in his message said, “The
proactive and prompt action of your soldiers in Sitio Canunghan, Brgy
Osmeńa, Palapag, Northern Samar is the product of their commitment and
resolve to protect peace-loving people and communities against the
NPAs and other threat groups. Your Army in Eastern Visayas is
relentless in the conduct of focused military operations against any
armed and lawless group, we also welcome those who will opt to
surrender and lay down their arms and rejoin the mainstream society
and avail of the government programs intended for NPA members.”
PRO8 chief orders
intensified gun ban enforcement
By RPCRD, Police Regional
October 3, 2013
CAMP KANGLEON, Palo,
Leyte – Police Regional Office 8 (PRO8) director PCSupt. Elmer R.
Soria ordered an intensified enforcement of the firearms ban as
authorities already arrested seven violators since the ban was
implemented last September 28.
“We want the barangay polls
to be more peaceful than the recent midterm elections. Strict
enforcement of election laws will greatly reduce any election-related
violence,” Soria said.
Four violators, including
two suspected drug pushers, were arrested for possessing firearms
while three others for carrying bladed weapons which are also
prohibited under the election law.
Few minutes since the ban
started, the Regional Special Operations Group 8 (RSOG8) led by PSInsp.
Dinvir Revita arrested couple Joel dela Vega and Hannie Grace Laynes
in a buybust operation in Brgy. Batug, Javier town in Leyte.
Aside from two sachets of
suspected “shabu” granules and the P1000 marked money, authorities
also seized from the suspects’ one homemade .38 caliber revolver
loaded with five live ammunitions.
In Catarman, Northern Samar,
fisherman Edgar Yruma, 40, was nabbed by the police after he allegedly
hacked his neighbor Jayson Openiano.
A 12-gauge shotgun loaded
with four bullets and a bolo was seized from Yruma.
Meanwhile, in Borongan City
in Eastern Samar, 38-year laborer Gerardo Calzado was turned over to
the police station by security guards Jose Allera and Carlos Becera of
CNOC Mac Joint Vetures after a heated argument ensued between the
suspect and the two guards and the former tried to draw a .38 caliber
revolver from his waist.
However, he was unable to
draw as the firearm was grabbed from Calzado by the two guards.
The three other persons were
arrested while carrying bladed weapons in police responses in the
cities of Tacloban and Ormoc.
“All arrested suspects are
now facing charges for violation of the Omnibus Election Code aside
from criminal cases in other offenses that they committed,” Soria
As all Permits to Carry
Firearms Outside of Residence (PTCFOR) were suspended since Friday,
Soria directed his men to intensify the gun ban through the conduct of
checkpoint operations in strategic places, operation bakal/sita,
implementation of search warrants, immediate police response and
focused police operations.
“Those who will be found
carrying firearms without Commission on Elections gun ban exemption
will be arrested, detained and criminal charges will be immediately
filed,” the police official warned.
Soria informed that
violation of the Omnibus Election Code carries an imprisonment of not
less than one year but not more than six years and shall not be
subject to probation.
He added that the guilty
party shall be sentenced to suffer permanent disqualification to hold
public office and deprivation of the right of suffrage.
If he is a foreigner, he
shall be sentenced to deportation which shall be enforced after the
prison term has been served, Soria disclosed.
This is without prejudice to
the cancellation of the violator’s firearms license and permit to
carry firearm outside residence if any, and the perpetual revocation
of the privilege to secure similar license or permit in the future.
For government employees,
perpetual disqualification to possess government owned and issued
firearms shall be imposed upon them without prejudice to the filing of
the proper criminal and/or administrative charges.
The gun ban will end on
November 12 or 15 days after the barangay elections.
PRO8 taps 189 PNP
scouts for election duties
By RPCRD, Police
Regional Office 8
October 2, 2013
CAMP KANGLEON, Palo,
Leyte – Stepping up security preparations for the October 28
barangay elections, the top official of the Police Regional Office 8
(PRO8) has ordered new graduates of its specialized anti-insurgency
course to render election duties and keep the polls as peaceful and
fair as possible.
“With the coming elections,
you will be enforcing election laws and render security duties. Expect
to have a recollection of exercises you learned as the principles and
techniques in responding to criminality, insurgency and other
emergencies will be aptly applied in the performance of your job,”
said PCSupt. Elmer R. Soria during Monday’s graduation of the Special
Counter-Insurgency Operations Unit Training (SCOUT).
Exhorted the active role of
the PNP in the anti-insurgency campaign, the PRO8 director also
cautioned the new graduates to initiate personal security measures as
they are also subjects of the enemy’s aggression.
“We mourned for our fallen
comrades who lost their lives while performing their duties, be ready
then at all times to handle and counter whatever possible harm the
enemy might inflict against you and your team,” he added.
Last Saturday night, Insp.
Alberto Ayad and POI July Pajanilla were ambushed by suspected New
People’s Army (NPA) terrorists while conducting patrol operations in
Arteche town in Eastern Samar. Another policeman was wounded in the
“Our enemies do not fear us
but they fear what we can become. They fear what we take for granted,
our potential,” the police official also said.
With the training, Soria
expects the new graduates to be ready, capable and competent in
handling field works as frontliners in the PNP’s internal peace and
The 189 police personnel
that have graduated PNP Scout Class 21-2013 will be assigned to the
Regional Public Safety Battalion (RPSB 8), the police maneuver unit
primarily tasked to confront the insurgency problem in Eastern Visayas.
The 145 male and 44 female
Scouts belong to police recruit “Matidlas” or “Matapat at
Disiplinadong Tagapagpatupad ng Batas” class of 2012.
The PNP Scout is a rigid
45-day training designed to equip police officers with the requisite
skills and confidence that will give them a distinct advantage and
proper knowledge in counter-insurgency and anti-terrorism operation.
The course puts premium on
combat skills development, jungle fighting and survival techniques and
also teaches the participants the principles and techniques of urban
crisis response operations primarily on search and rescue (SAR) and
Under Commission on Election
9733, the PNP was deputized to perform specific duties relative to the
conduct of the barangay elections.
Since Saturday, the PRO8
started enforcing the gun ban and established checkpoints as part of
the PNP effort to make the village polls peaceful and violence-free.
against arctic activists ‘an assault on peaceful protest’ - Greenpeace
October 2, 2013
AMSTERDAM – The
Russian state prosecutor today laid charges of piracy against a
Greenpeace activist who protested against oil drilling in the Arctic.
A freelance videographer has also been charged with piracy, which
carries a maximum 15 year jail sentence. It is an extreme and
disproportionate charge. Charges are expected to be brought against
other Greenpeace campaigners over the coming hours and days.
Responding to the news,
Greenpeace International executive director KumiNaidoo said:
“A charge of piracy is being
laid against men and women whose only crime is to be possessed of a
conscience. This is an outrage and represents nothing less than an
assault on the very principle of peaceful protest. Any claim that
these activists are pirates is as absurd as it is abominable. It is
utterly irrational, it is designed to intimidate and silence us, but
we will not be cowed.
“This is now the most
serious threat to Greenpeace’s peaceful environmental activism since
agents of the French secret service bombed the Rainbow Warrior and
killed our colleague Fernando Pereira because we stood against French
nuclear weapons testing in the Pacific. Three decades later the
activists of the Arctic Sunrise also took a stand, this time against
the powerful vested interests of the oil industry, and they could now
face the prospect of long periods in a Russian jail. I call on people
from across the world, anybody who ever raised their voice in support
of something they believe in, and especially the good people of
Russia, to come to their aid at this moment and join us in demanding
the release of the Arctic 30.
“The courageous crew of the
Greenpeace ship Arctic Sunrise protested at that Gazprom rig because
they felt compelled to bear witness to the slow but unrelenting
destruction of the Arctic. The ice is retreating, oil companies are
moving north to drill for the fuels that are driving that melting,
species are at risk, including our own. Thirty men and women, some
young, others not-so-young, all with a moral compass, actually did
something about it. Just as in years past, the resolve and courage
required to win a better future for our children requires personal
sacrifice, a sacrifice the Arctic 30 are now making. They made their
stand in the interests of us all. Now we must come together and stand
The charge has so far been
laid against crew member Ana Paula Alminhana from Brazil, and
freelance videographer Kieron Bryan from the UK.
The 28 activists, a
freelance photographer and the freelance videographer, were involved
in a protest against the Gazprom Arctic drilling platform
Prirazlomnaya on September 18th. Two activists tried to climb the side
of the platform and hang a banner. Today Greenpeace is releasing
photographs of the moment Russian security services abseiled from a
helicopter onto the deck of the Arctic Sunrise and seized the ship at
gunpoint. The photographs clearly show peaceful activists posing no
threat to the Russian authorities.
“I ask people to look at
those photographs and decide if the peaceful campaigners with their
arms raised, with guns pointed at their chests, could ever be
described as pirates,” said KumiNaidoo.
Last week President Putin
himself scoffed at the notion that the Greenpeace protesters were
pirates. He said that "It is absolutely evident that they are, of
course, not pirates."
The number of people
worldwide who have written to Russian embassies demanding the release
of the activists and freelancers today passed one million. Others
calling for the release of the Arctic 30 include Nobel peace prize
winner Adolfo Pérez Esquivel, Amnesty International, Human Rights
Watch and the actor Ewan McGregor.
The Captain of the Arctic
Sunrise, Peter Willcox - now in a Russian jail - was the Captain of
the Rainbow Warrior when it was bombed in 1985.