Cops ordered to include culverts in inspections

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Sunday, May 18, 2014


THE Davao City Police Office (DCPO) will have to regularly check on drainage culverts near establishments like pawnshops against any operation by an “acetylene gang,” whose modus operandi is to dig up an underground tunnel from a drainage pipe into their targeted establishment.

In his television program "Gikan sa Masa, Para sa Masa," Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte said such alternative course of action by the police came out after alleged members of the acetylene gang broke into Sunscor Grocerama [Supermarket] at corner Saavedra Street and Juan dela Cruz Street in Toril in Davao City last week.

"Sige na pud sila ug lili dira sa mga imburnal kay kung mausab na unya naa sila dira wala nag bantay, iapil nako sila ug lubong sa imburnal (The police are now regularly checking drainage culverts because once such a break-in happens again, I just might just bury them in the drains)," Duterte said, adding that he believes most suspects are not from Davao City but from Luzon.

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"Sagad sa mga suspect mga miners na from Luzon. Naa na sa Manila. I think we had about four incidents here, pero wala pa nadakpan kay dili man na mga taga diri. We already know them. Once mugawas sila diri, the police in other areas will be able to identify them, makita mana sila sa computer (Most are miners from Luzon. They operate in Manila. We have not arrested those who ventured here but we already know them. Once they try to leave, they will be arrested because there is an alert against them)," he said.

Suspects were identified as Zaldy Bilag Ligayo, Jason Pespes Jaime, Ericson Lambino, Mando Paas Mariacas, Francisco Kiaso, Roger Siki Pating, Crispin Ngan-ngan, and an unidentified female companion. Police identified them through a rogue gallery.

Toril Police Station commander Chief Inspector Angel Sumagaysay said the suspects were charged before the City Prosecutor's Office through regular filing on Saturday.

He added that the suspects are still at large and can no longer be found in the area as of press time.

Sumagaysay earlier described the gang as a well-organized group due to its several sub–groups and members in different areas of the country.

He said the group has been operating for around 20 years now, adding that its usual targets are pawnshops and jewelry stores.

Personnel of the Toril Police Station earlier found the house rented by four of the eight notorious robbers at Block 3 Lot 8 Toril Country Homes in Toril owned by Mr. and Mrs. Ceballos Cadiling. However, the suspects already left around 9 a.m. of May 12 before the police arrived in the area.

Sumagaysay said that their manhunt operation against the suspects is still ongoing.

He said they are doing their best to locate and arrest the suspects behind the incident.

Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on May 19, 2014.

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