POLICE intelligence operatives have arrested an active non-uniformed personnel assigned at Banguingui Municipal Police Station in Sulu for allegedly providing assistance to the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG).
Masckur Adoh Patarasa, also known as Omair Sali Taib, is a brother-in-law of the late Isnilon Hapilon, who was the head of Islamic State (IS) terrorists in the Philippines.
Philippine National Police (PNP) Chief Guillermo Eleazar said Patarasa was arrested in a police operation in Barangay Asturias, Jolo, Sulu at 7 p.m. on Friday, July 30.
Patarasa has a standing arrest warrant for seven separate cases of kidnapping and serious illegal detention.
Eleazar said Patarasa serves as finance/logistics liaison officer of Dawla Islamiya and ASG. He was included in the Martial Law Arrest Order No. 1 during the Marawi siege in 2017.
Police records show that in May 2017, Patarasa and an unidentified individual linked with ASG planned to send funds to ASG members fighting in Marawi City through Hapilon.
Eleazar said Patarasa joined the ASG in 2001 under Khadaffy Janjalani in Basilan and later shifted to ASG senior leader Radullan Sahiron in Sulu.
He was also known to have direct contact with Jemaah Islamiyah operative Amin Baco, also known as Guro Jihad, and other ASG members.
“Deeper background investigation also disclosed that Patarasa received funds from Almaida Salvin, a designated terrorist included in the U.S. Treasury’s sanctions list who was arrested sometime in April 2019 for illegal possession of explosives through Merhama Sawari who was neutralized in Parañaque City shootout together with three suspected terrorists on June 20, 2020,” Eleazar added. (Third Anne Peralta-Malonzo / SunStar Philippines)