Authorities rescued a 5-year-old boy in Cebu City Tuesday night, after his parents paid ransom to a church-mate who abducted him more than two weeks ago in Bacolod City, police said.

The victim, whose name is being withheld for security, was rescued at the Montesclaros Pension House and Dormitory along Pelaez Ext., around 8:45 p.m., said Senior Superintendent Roberto Fajardo, director of the PNP Anti-Kidnapping Group (AKG).

Suspect Allan Quilbo, 58, a native of Gerona, Tarlac, who attends the same church as the boy’s parents, was arrested when operatives caught him “guarding the victim,” Fajardo said in a statement.

Elements of the AKG Visayas, Regional Intelligence Unit 7, and Cebu City Police carried out the rescue operation after the boy’s parents lodged a complaint.

Quilbo took the child in Bacolod City on January 4 after asking the latter’s parents for permission to bring the minor to a store to buy a coloring book, Fajardo said.

But Quilbo did not return the boy and even demanded ransom from the parents in exchange for the child’s release, he said.

A total of P16,000 was deposited to Quilbo’s bank account but he still did not release the child, so police launched a rescue operation, Fajardo said.

The rescued minor is now with his parents, after having undergone medical examination and stress debriefing.

A case of kidnapping for ransom is now being prepared against Quilbo, who is presently detained at AKG Visayas office, Fajardo said. (John Roson)

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