A drug lord operating in Central Mindanao, who was among the inmates of the North Cotabato District Jail (NCDJ), paid for the attack at the prison facility which led to his escape and more than 150 others last week.
North Cotabato acting Gov. Shirlyn Macasarte-Villanueva bared this during a press conference she held in her city on Tuesday.
Villanueva said one of the escaped inmates, suspected drug lord Melvin Casangyao, gave Esmael Nasser alias Commander Derby an initial payment of P1 million to launch the attack.
Villanueva named the drug lord who paid P2 million, with P1 million to stage the raid and another P1 million, if the attack is successful.
Nasser, leader of a rag-tag band based in Kabacan town, was contacted by Casangyao for the attack. Nasser is an alleged leader of a breaway group of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front.
The mayor aded that 94 of the total number of inmates who escaped are involved in illegal drugs.
The acting governor is certain that the attack was drug-related based on record that 94 out of 158 inmates who escaped were all facing drug charges.
P10K bounty offered
The acting governor also announced the P2 million reward for the drug lord and Nasser while announcing a P10,000 bounty for the recapture of each of the 98 inmates who are still at large.
She said the money will be sourced from the funds of the Cotabato provincial government.
Authorities said at least 100 armed men attacked the NCDJ in the wee hours of January 3.
During the attack, a total of 158 inmates escaped from the back portion of the prison facility.
The official also offered P10,000 each for the remaining 98 inmates who remain at large.
Members of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan have approved the reward system for the escapees.
Currently, a total of 49 escapees have been recaptured, 10 died and one was wounded during the continuing military and police pursuit operations.
Cop held over ‘kidnapped’
Meanwhile. a Philippine policeman assigned to fighting drugs has been detained over the alleged kidnapping of a South Korean businessman who went missing nearly three months ago, authorities said Tuesday.
The businessman’s wife reported the abduction to the police after he disappeared from his home in the northern city of Angeles in October last year, they added.
“The (Philippine National Police) chief has ordered the placing under restricted custody of the policeman allegedly involved in the kidnapping of a Korean businessman,” national police spokesman Dionardo Carlos told AFP.
Philippine police chief Ronald dela Rosa said on Monday the policeman alleged to have taken part in the abduction was a low-ranking officer assigned to a special unit going after drug traffickers in Angeles.
Police have asked the justice department to file criminal charges against him, dela Rosa said.
However dela Rosa did not give any details as to whether the detained officer had given any information about the case.
Police did not identify the missing South Korean or the officer under investigation for alleged kidnapping.
The South Korean embassy in Manila told AFP it did not wish to comment on the case.
The wife said she had already paid P5 million pesos but the kidnappers wanted another 4.5 million pesos, reports said.
The Philippine police force has a long history of corruption.
We are not condoning (the alleged kidnapping). If it’s proven that he was responsible, he doesn’t deserve any day in this organization,” dela Rosa said.
Mayors involved in drugs told
to heed Du30’s call to resign
The chairman of the House committee on dangerous drugs yesterday called on local chiefs executives who are involved in the drug trade to heed the warning of President Rodrigo Duterte to resign unless they want to die.
Surigao del Norte Rep. Robert Ace Barbers said those who are into drugs should not ignore the warning of the president because the latter is serious in his campaign against drugs.
Duterte in one of his recent speeches said he had a long list of mayors who are involved in the drug trade. He warned the mayors to resign or die. Gerry Baldo, Ted Tuvera, AFP and PNA