A 55-YEAR-OLD businessman was arrested past 9 p.m. Wednesday, August 16, for allegedly keeping several unlicensed firearms in Suba Village, Danao City, Cebu.
Police Regional Office 7 Director Jose Mario Espino identified the suspect as Romel Talibid Pinote, whose alleged illegal gun-running activities were reported to authorities by his neighbors.
“He is a broker. He is financing the manufacture of firearms,” said Espino.
He told CPPO Director Eric Noble to go after the illegal gun-makers, who are in the city’s mountain villages.
Noble, for his part, said that they checked the police’s firearms licensing unit and learned that Pinote had no permits to either manufacture or sell firearms.
Pinote said some of his supplies came from Barangay Lawaan.
Intelligence reports stated that Pinote has several customers, including a police officer from a local unit.
Supt. Joie Yape Jr., CPPO-Provincial Intelligence Branch (PIB) chief, said that Pinote is a known seller of roasted pigs in the city.
Pinote admitted owning the unlicensed firearms, saying he wanted more income. His guns are in demand during elections and Christmas season.
He said a .45 pistol costs P6,000, while a .38 revolver is priced at P1,900. Firearms of lower caliber are cheaper.
Seized from Pinote were 19 pieces of .22 magnum revolver, 14 pieces of .45 pistols, 11 pieces of .38 revolver, and six pieces of 9mm magnum revolver. These are valued at more than P200,000.
The PIB-led operation was authorized by a search warrant issued by Talisay City Regional Trial Court Branch 66 Judge Jacinto Fajardo Jr.
Pinote will be charged for violating Republic Act 10591, or the Comprehensive Firearms and Ammunition Regulation Act. (KAL)