Cops seize P100T guns, parts-A A +A
Saturday, January 26, 2013
POLICE are studying how to legalize gun-making again in Danao City, after a “big-time” gun manufacturer and her two workers were arrested late Friday afternoon.
About P100,000 worth of guns and gun parts were confiscated by police inside the house of Merlita Perez, 40, in Barangay Kahumayan.
Her husband, a barangay councilor, was able to run away.
The two workers–Norman Alerta, 24, and Santos Lomin, 31—were cornered by police and caught making firearms.
Chief Supt. Marcelo Garbo Jr., head of the Police Regional Office 7, said a solution must be made, as many residents rely on the gun-making trade as their main source of living.
“This is like a cat and mouse activity. This has to stop. When it’s legalized, it would mean revenue, job generation and restricted gun control,” he said.
Last Thursday, police also seized gun parts and equipment valued at P1 million in a back-to-back operation in Danao City.
Chief Insp. George Ylanan, head of the Regional Special Operations Group 7, said the operation came after they received a memorandum from DILG to intensify operations against illegal gun manufacturers with the onset of election season.
“There could be a great demand of firearms that could be used during the elections,” he said.
Ylanan said his operatives bought a .38 revolver worth P5,000 from Perez at 5 p.m. The policemen immediately stormed the house after Perez handed down the firearm.
Police confiscated 45 pistols, two .38 revolvers, 65 assorted barrels, two receivers, seven slides, 39 cylinders, ten reverse plugs, 12 bosings, seven lock springs, eight hand grips, one magazine, 84 live bullets, three empty shells and several equipments.
When interviewed by reporters, Perez admitted financing the illegal trade for some time.
“Mao naman ni among panginabuhi na gyud (This is our only means of livelihood),” she said.
Contrary to what police believed, Perez said the demand is low compared to previous years.
Alerta, on the other hand, said making firearms is not easy as it could take one month.
“Makaginansiya rasad mi og gamay ani. Maayo nalang kay sa mangawat (We only make a little profit. This is better than stealing),” he told reporters.
A cooperative of gunsmiths was organized before in Danao City called the Workers League of Danao Multi-Purpose Cooperative (World-MPC), which manufactured .38 revolvers and .45 pistols.
World-MPC was licensed to make firearms for the Philippine National Police. The cooperative, however, was allegedly mismanaged, leading to its closure of operations.
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on January 27, 2013.