Armed men abducted a businessman at his eatery near the shore of Zamboanga City on Friday night, police said.

Senior Supt. Edwin de Ocampo, officer-in-charge of the Zamboanga City Police, identified the victim as Edgar Favella, 50, owner of a “carinderia” along the highway near the shore of Brgy. Maasin.

Favella is also engaged in logistics and transport services, owning some hauling trucks, a source said.

Five men, of whom two were carrying short firearms, seized Favella in front of his eatery around 6:45 p.m. and forced him into a pumpboat, De Ocampo said in a phone interview.

Favella’s son Sandy saw the commotion and tried to fight off the abductors, but withdrew when one pointed a gun at him, De Ocampo said.

Tutulungan sana niya ‘yung tatay niya dahil nakita niya dun sa labas, eh nung tinutukan na siya ng baril din, tumakbo na siya sa loob nung karinderya,” the police official said.

Parang mga bagito (ang mga abductor)… kasi nakipagsuntukan pa,” De Ocampo noted.

Three of the abductors took Favella with them on the pumpboat while the other two escaped on a motorcycle, he said.

Members of the local police, Navy, PNP Special Action Force, and Maritime Group scoured the shores and waters of Brgy. Maasin until Saturday morning, but found no sign of the abductors.

De Ocampo said there is a possibility that the abductors took Favella to Basilan so he alerted authorities there about the abduction.

Maasin, part of Zamboanga City’s 136-kilometer shoreline, lies in the east coast facing Basilan, he noted.

Intelligence operatives have also been ordered to check the coast thoroughly, De Ocampo added. (John Roson)

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