Raps filed vs 2 ‘rebels’ in Toboso clash-A A +A
Tuesday, September 17, 2013
THE two suspected New People’s Army rebels captured during an encounter with government troops early Saturday morning in Toboso town in Sagay City are facing charges for illegal possession of firearms and explosives.
Colonel Jon Aying, 303rd Brigade commander, also said Monday that four more high-powered firearms that include three M-14 Armalite and an AK-47 rifles were recovered by the military during the follow-up operation in line with the continuing pressure they employed against the rebels.
Governor Alfredo Marañon, Jr. has commended the accomplishment of the military. He reiterated his call for the rebels to return to the government, because “the real enemy of everybody is poverty and the solution is not through infighting among the rebels and the soldiers.”
"We should unite to fight our real enemy which is poverty," the governor said.
The suspected rebels identified as Rene Villarias, 45, of Barangay Jonob-Jonob, Escalante City, and Richard Gallego, 36, of Brgy. Magticol, Toboso, were seen hiding in a house at Sitio Lower Magtuod, Barangay Bug-ang, Toboso around 11 a.m. Saturday.
This was after army soldiers pursued about 17 fleeing rebels with whom they had an encounter at the boundary of Toboso town and Sagay City, Negros Occidental.
The two suspects had undergone inquest proceedings Sunday and brought to the Hall of Justice in San Carlos City for the filing of the cases.
A platoon-sized unit of the 62nd Infantry Battalion Headquarters Service Company soldiers led by 1Lt. Albert Dividina was responding to reports about the presence of an armed group, after they encountered suspected NPA rebels at the boundary of Sitio Vergara, Barangay Bug-ang, Toboso and Sitio Dalia, Barangay Puey, Sagay City around 4:45 a.m. Saturday.
Recovered during the clash were three M-16 rifles and two .45 caliber guns,a box full of AK-47 assault rifle ammunition, a rifle grenade, eight ammunition of M-203 grenade launchers, three backpacks and nine hammocks, 10 ponchos, a compass, combat boots with bloodstains, several back packs containing assorted personal clothings, medicines, and subversive documents.
Gallego has a pending murder case for shooting an unidentified detachment commander.
Published in the Sun.Star Bacolod newspaper on September 17, 2013.