Another suspected member of the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army (CPP-NPA) facing murder and frustrated murder charges was arrested by Army and police forces in Toboso, Negros Occidental on January 14.
On Sunday, the Philippine Army’s 3rd Infantry Division confirmed the arrest of Alberto “Berting” Pandacan, 70, who belongs to the NPA’s Northern Negros Front (NNF) Komiteng Rehiyon-Negros.
Pandacan’s arrest comes after his comrade Ruffa Baynosa, 44, known as “Ka Reniel” and “Nexie”, a medical officer of NNF’s Sandatahang Yunit Propaganda, was apprehended by government troops at Hacienda Ambulog, Barangay San Fernando in Talisay City on the same day.
Pandacan was arrested at his house in Sitio Seraje, Barangay San Isidro, at around 1 p.m. by virtue of the warrants issued by then Presiding Judge Danilo Amisola of the Regional Trial Court Branch 58 in neighboring San Carlos City.
He and Baynosa, who hail from Barangay San Jose, Toboso, were allegedly among the group of NPA rebels who ambushed civilians on board a utility truck at Sitio Toril, Barangay Salamanca, Toboso on July 13, 2009, that killed three persons and injured three others.
In a statement, Col. Michael Samson, acting commander of the 303rd Infantry Brigade based in Murcia, Negros Occidental, said the arrest of the two CPP-NPA members is a manifestation of the strong collaboration of the Army and the Philippine National Police.
“May justice be served to the victims and their families of the unfortunate incident in 2009. We will be relentless in pursuing the NPA. I urge the others to stop running and surrender peacefully,” he added. SOVEREIGNPH