A ROBBERY suspect from Masbate was collared by the police in Mandaue City yesterday dawn, one of two men caught in the city during the weekend for allegedly violating the gun ban.
Helario Sollano, alias Ondo, 43, a native of Placer, Masbate was arrested for alleged illegal possession of a firearm and violation of the election gun ban past 1 a.m. in Barangay Labogon.
His arrest came amid reminders from the police that the gun ban remains in effect until June 12 and that the police are still on full alert.
Sollano, who is detained at the Basak Police Station, is allegedly one of the suspects who attempted to rob a construction firm in Barangay Labogon last year.
He eluded arrest at the time, but three of his cohorts were nabbed. He also has an existing arrest warrant in Masbate, said Insp. Wilson Abot, chief of the Basak Police Station.
Abot said a concerned citizen called the station around midnight and informed the police about an armed person in Sitio Lapyahan, Barangay Labogon.
Along with personnel of the City Intelligence Branch led by Supt. Josefino Ligan, Abot and his men went to the area and arrested Sollano.
Confiscated from the suspect was a .357 revolver with four live ammunitions.
The police are investigating whether Sollano was involved in other robbery incidents in Mandaue.
Another man was arrested for violating the gun ban in Mandaue last Saturday night.
Police nabbed Junve Taylaran, 30, in Sitio Nangka, Barangay Casuntingan past 6:30 p.m.
The police confiscated a homemade .38 pistol with four live ammunitions from the Taylaran, who is also a suspected member of an “akyat bahay” gang.
Bearing, carrying or transporting firearms or other deadly weapons is prohibited by the Commission on Elections until June 12.
Taylaran was also tagged as a suspect in burglary incidents in Barangay Subangdaku.
Police officers from the Casuntingan Police Station led by Insp. Ramil Morpos spotted the suspect carrying a gun in Sitio Nangka. The suspect tried to elude arrest but he was caught inside his house.
In an interview, Senior Supt. Erson Digal, chief of the Police Regional Office (PRO) 7’s Operations and Plans Division, said they are still on full alert.
During a full alert status, no police operative is allowed to take a leave of absence and those on leave are called to active duty.
On a normal day, only duty officers are present; half of all personnel on their day off are required to be present during a heightened alert status; and all personnel are ordered to in the station during a full alert status, even on their days off.
The Regional Joint Security Control Center (RJSSC) will continue to monitor all violations of the Omnibus Election Code and Republic Act (RA) 8294, which punishes the illegal possession of firearms and explosives.
Digal said the police will continue to implement anti-criminality operations that include checkpoints and a crackdown against lawless elements and loose firearms.
PRO 7 Director Marcelo Garbo J. congratulated the police for their role in keeping last Monday’s elections “fair and secure.” He attributed the overall success to the collective efforts of RJSSC and other law enforcement agencies.
A PRO 7 report states there were 47 election-related incidents recorded on May 12 and 13. These included seven shooting incidents, three strafing cases, nine incidents of vote-buying and four harassment cases.
Police arrested 36 persons for violating the liquor ban, including 10 in Cebu
Province, 15 in Cebu City and one each in Lapu-Lapu City and Mandaue City.
Police also seized 272 firearms, including 74 high-powered ones.
During an earlier interview, Commission on Elections (Comelec) 7 Director Temie Lambino agreed with the police’s assessment, declaring the elections a success.
The tasks of the police now include securing the election’s winners, Digal said. At least two police officers will look after the newly-elected government officials, whose terms will begin on June 30.
All provincial and city police directors will have to coordinate with their Joint Security Command Centers for the implementation of the security plan, Digal said.