THE police and military have arrested a member of the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) who was involved in the Sipadan kidnapping more than 15 years ago, an official announced Thursday.
Chief Inspector Rogelio Alabata, Zamboanga Peninsula Police Regional Office information officer, identified the arrested suspect as Mentang Munap alias Said.
Alabata said Munap was arrested around 4:30 p.m. Wednesday near Zamboanga City Hall along Don Pablo Lorenzo Street.
He said Munap has standing warrant of arrest for 21 counts of kidnapping and serious illegal detention with ransom issued by a court in Pasig City.
Munap was allegedly involved in the April 2000 kidnapping of 21 people in a dive resort in the island of Sipadan, Malaysia.
The hostages consisting of eight Europeans and 11 Asians -- nine Malaysian and two Filipinos -- were herded to the hinterlands of Sulu province in the Philippines.
The ASG released the hostages in batches months later after alleged payment of huge amount of ransom.
Alabata said Munap was turned over to the custody of the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group for proper documentation.