Labuan police chief in hot water over teacher’s kidnap PDF Print E-mail
Friday, 16 November 2012 14:33

Labuan Police Station Commander Chief Insp. Roberto Marcos is in hot water pending explanation from the Police Regional Office-9 regarding security lapses as noted in his area of jurisdiction and the reported “40-minutes” distress response time which resulted in the abduction of a 48-year old elementary school teacher at Purok 5, Barangay Labuan this city last Tuesday night.

Police Regional Office-9 Director Chief Supt. Napoleon Estilles said he has directed Chief Insp. Marcos who is under the supervision of OIC City Police Director Sr.Supt. James Mejia, to explain within prescribed number of hours why the long delay in responding to the kidnapping incident at Purok 5 which is only 600 meters away from the Labuan police station.

“Upon investigation, we found out that there were lapses in the security measures implemented by Labuan Police Station. They must explain why they were so complacent of the security in the area where in fact there were already incidents which had happened there,”Estilles said.

He said the area has already been noted as critical due to the previous incidents of kidnapping which have brought anxiety and fear among businessmen and ordinary residents.

Estilles said that he has given orders to the ZCPO leadership to resolve this crisis the soonest possible time in order for the victim to be able to be re-united with her family

As of yesterday, there were no demands yet made by the kidnappers.

“It’s not only Zamboanga City, but the entire police command in the region that is now in full mobility in the objective of recovering the latest kidnap victim in the city the soonest possible time,“ Estilles said.

Estilles ordered the different Police Provincial Offices in Zamboanga Peninsula to be on full alert and conduct patrols in their areas of responsibility for possible sightings of the members of the kidnap group whose identities are still being verified.

Flordeliza Ongchua is the third person abducted in the west coast of this city. On April 4, 2010, Filipino-Swiss Charlie Rieth was seized by gunmen at his resthouse in the adjacent Barangay of  Patalon. Rieth was freed in the vicinity of Labuan on June 16, 2010.

Mrs. Olivia Barredo y Angeles, a drug store owner, was snatched by gunmen outside their residence in Labuan on March 3, 2011 and was brought to an unknown place aboard a pumpboat. Barredo was released by her captors in RT Lim municipality, Zamboanga Sibugay on April 22 of the same year after she was transferred from inter-island locations in the said province.

In all of the above-mentioned incidents, similar pattern was noted from the kidnappers. They attack using the element of surprise after sunset on board two motorized pumpboats, clad in PNP and AFP uniforms, armed with assault rifles and know the exact location of their targets. – Bhong Simbajon