Alleged Abu Sayyaf member Hussein Ahaddin while being arrested in Zamboanga City. Ahaddin is facing charges for the twin bombing of the Shop O’ Rama and the Shopper’s Central department stores in 2002. He is also believed to be involved in several other bombings in the city, including the one that ripped through the Atilano pension house on Nov. 27. (PNP photo)

Authorities arrested an alleged Abu Sayyaf member believed to be involved in the weekend bombing of a pension house in Zamboanga City, during an operation Tuesday night.

Hussien Amajad Ahaddin, a member of the Abu Sayyaf’s “urban terrorist group,” was arrested around 8 p.m. at Purok 4, Brgy. Muti, Director Felicisimo Khu, head of the PNP Directorate for Integrated Police Operations in Western Mindanao, said.

The arrest, led by the Anti-Terrorism Council, was carried out on a warrant for multiple murder and multiple frustrated murder committed during the October 17, 2002 bombing of the Shop-o-Rama department store, Khu said.

The blast and the subsequent explosion at the adjacent Shoppers Central store minutes later, where the bombers used trinitrotoluene (TNT), killed at least seven people and wounded more than 100 others.

Ahaddin, who uses the alias Abu Asraf, is a member of the group that “planned” last Sunday’s bombing of the Atilano Pension House, where three people got killed and 27 were wounded, Khu said.

The same group is allegedly led by Abu Moadz and Ustadz Ibni Acosta who, meanwhile, are suspects in the bombing of the San Roque Cockpit on October 9.

Chief Supt. Elpidio de Asis, Zamboanga Peninsula regional police director, said an informant reported sighting Ahaddin at a house in Brgy. Muti so police and military troops were immediately sent.

The house is owned by Hadja Rukia Asnawi, wife Moro Islamic Liberation Front commander Dan Laksaw Asnawi who is among those charged for the killing of 19 soldiers in Al Barka, Basilan, last October 18, De Asis said.

“Kasama siya (Rukia Asnawi) sa inimbitahan na magpaliwanag kung bakit nasa bahay niya itong tao na ito (Ahaddin),” the police official said.

Ahaddin is being probed at the 9th Criminal Investigation and Detection Unit’s headquarters as of this writing. (John Roson)

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