ZAMBOANGA CITY, July 31 — Police Regional Office-9 (PRO-9) on Monday reported the arrest of four of the suspects tagged in the ambush-slay of a town mayor four years ago in the nearby province of Zamboanga Sibugay.
Chief Insp. Helen Galvez, PRO-9 spokesperson, identified the suspects as Basir Samson, 30; Asari Sabilin, 35; Jul-Asri Delos Reyes, 25; and, Meloddin Untong, 47.
Galvez said they were arrested in a law enforcement operation at around 12:44 p.m. Friday at Sitio Pangi, Barangay Lower Tungawan, Tungawan, Zamboanga Sibugay.
Galvez said the arresting team, armed with warrant of arrest, swooped down on the village after it was reported that the suspects were hiding in the area.
She said the suspects were among the those named in the arrest warrant issued on February 6, 2017 by the court in Zamboanga Sibugay.
She said the other suspects identified in the warrant of arrest are the following: Nasser Sabilin; Bakrin Irijainsakinal; Alamain Labain; Mahmod Kalim; Halid Samat; Hakim Hassan; Janori Sabilin; Saldaani Abdulla; and, several John Does.
The suspects are facing the following charges in court: one-count murder; five-count frustrated murder; and, six-count attempted murder.
They were tagged as among those responsible in the ambush-slay of Mayor Randy Climaco of Tungawan, Zamboanga Sibugay on October 12, 2012.
Six others, including Climaco’s vice mayor, were wounded during the incident that occurred at Purok 7, Barangay Cayamcam, Tungawan.
They were ambushed hours after they filed certificates of candidacy (COC) as it was the first day of filing of COC for the 2013 local and national elections.
Climaco’s group was aboard a pick-up type vehicle headed for Barangay Libertad from Barangay Batungan when ambushed by a group of unidentified gunmen.
Galvez said a caliber .45 pistol with ammunition were confiscated from the suspects’ possession.