MABALACAT – An alleged "close-in security man" of a mayoralty bet here was apprehended Sunday by elements of the town police for gun totting.

Ryan Parica Miranda, 36, of 13 Mabini Street, Barangay Dau, here was charged with illegal possession of firearms and violation of the gun ban provision of the Omnibus Election Code of the Commission on Elections (Comelec).

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Miranda yielded a 9mm Taurus hand gun with serial number TBU 14273 when accosted by police officers Robert Manaloto and Pepe Lomocso of the Community Police Assistance Center 1, Dau Police Station.

The licensed pistol is loaded with nine live ammunition when seized from Miranda, Chief Inspector Jowen Dela Cruz, Dau police commander said.

Reports have it that Miranda, with a gun tucked on his waist, challenged his neighbors into a fistfight.

The responding police asked Miranda to hand over his weapon and the latter surrendered peacefully.

Authorities said that Miranda introduced himself as a “close-in security personnel” of Marjorie Morales-Sambo.

Mabalacat Water District (MWD) chairman Diosdado Pangilinan, a close ally of incumbent mayor Marino “Boking” Morales denounced the incident and hit Sambo’s camp.

“Wala pa man po sa puwesto umaabuso na ang kanyang mga tao. Paano pa po kung si Marjorie ang maupo baka takutin nila ang mga tao,” said Pangilinan.

Pangilinan said Sambo had “defied his father and it was not surprising that they will also defy the gun ban imposed by the Commission on Elections (Comelec).”

“Yung ama nga nila na nagpalaki sa kanya at nag-aruga sinuway nila, batas pa kaya ang hindi susuwayin,” said Pangilinan.

John Sambo, husband of Marjorie, on the hand clarified that Miranda is a close friend and not a body guard.

“Wala naman po kaming body guard. Alam po namin na ipinagbabawal ng Comelec yan,” Sambo said.

Sambo added that his wife has nothing to do with the incident saying “that is Miranda’s own lookout.”

Sambo said they are still awaiting the police officers the Comelec will assign to their camp as escorts of his wife during the campaign period. (Reynaldo G. Navales)