Gunmen seize school official in Zambo

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Tuesday, January 28, 2014


(UPDATED) -- Government authorities have arrested one of the eight gunmen involved in the abduction late Monday of an education official in the town of Kumalarang, Zamboanga del Sur, police officials announced Tuesday.

Kumalarang police chief Leonel Roncesvalles identified the suspect as Ryan Tumales, who was arrested in the village of Picanan, Kumalarang town.

Roncevalles said that Tumales, 22, a resident of Lumbia, Siayan, Zamboanga del Norte, was arrested two hours after the incident by village watchmen led by Picanan village councilman Virgilio Acunam.

Roncesvalles said that Tumales was positively identified by Tessie Luna, the wife of the victim, Rudy, as one of the eight gunmen that seized them.

Rudy is the supervisor of Bayog District School in the municipality of Bayog, Zamboanga del Sur, while Tessie is the supervisor of Kumalarang Central Elementary School in Kumalarang town of the same province.

Tessie was fortunate to have managed to escape before she and her husband were forced to board on one of the three motorized bancas at the shore of Sitio Dacun in the village of Picanan, Kumalarang.

Chief Inspector Ariel Huesca, Zamboanga Peninsula police information officer, said the suspects barged into the house of the Luna family and seized the couple around 8 p.m. Monday in the village of Diplo, Kumalarang.

Huesca said the suspects brought the couple to the shore in Sitio Dacun in the village of Picanan of the same town using the Sports Utility Vehicle (SUV) of the school officials.

Huesca said that it was at the shore of Dacun where Tessie was able to escape while the suspects were dragging them towards one of the three waiting motorized bancas.

He said the suspects were forced to abandoned Tessie as they fled aboard motorized bancas bringing with them Rudy upon sensing the arrival of policemen.

He joint police and military forces are tracking the whereabouts of Rudy in a bid to rescue the victim.

Local news

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