10 intruders held in Camp Aguinaldo
Military police nabbed 10 armed men who tried to enter Camp Aguinaldo, the headquarters of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), in Quezon City early morning today.
Col. Edgard Arevalo, chief of the AFP Public Affairs Office, said in a press briefing the intruders, who arrived on board a van at 5:30 a.m. at Gate 6, claimed they were members of the so-called “Southeast Asia Collective Defense Treaty.”
Arevalo said the group was held for questioning for failure to present documents for their firearms, including exemptions from the election gun ban.
The group’s leader was a certain Daniel Pagalan, allegedly the group’s ‘Chief Intelligence.’ His companions were identified as Alvin Simbahon, Rolando Mahusay alias “Kumander Melody,” Dioscoro Danis, James Iwayan, Butch B. Galimba, Rico Giducos, Ramil B. Peralta, Rundy Paderes and Pascula Dizon alias “Kumander Haslim”. They all claimed to be residents of Koronadal City in South Cotabato.
“They were identified based on identifications they presented bearing the letterhead ‘Southeast Asia Collective Defense Treaty.’ The fact that they wore (the same) black T-shirts and design drew the suspicion of the guards on duty.
When asked by military police, the men admitted they were carrying firearms and said they were on their way to present a letter request for accreditation to Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana through a staff.
“But upon checking, it turned out that they have no prior appointment with the office that they intended to visit. Hence, the persons were held for questioning,” Arevalo said.
Seized from the group were two homemade .45 caliber pistols and three 9mm handguns, three magazines with 47 rounds of 9mm bullets and 26 .45 caliber live ammunition and identification cards of still unknown authority and source.
Arevalo said the suspects were immediately turned over to the nearby Station 8 of the Quezon City Police for further investigation.
He commended the guards on duty under Col. John Dominic Pulido, the camp commander, for their vigilance.
“These sentinels will be cited for the faithful performance of their duty and in manifesting a high degree of alertness and level of camp security,” he said. #