Tag Archive: Luzon

Five suspected communist rebels were killed while another was captured in a clash with policemen in Mexico, Pampanga, early Tuesday, police said.

Killed were four men and a woman who are all believed to be members of the Marxist-Leninist Party of the Philippines-Rebolusyunaryong Hukbong Bayan (MLPP-RHB), Pampanga provincial police director Senior Superintendent Rodolfo Recomono said.

The five were later identified as Roel Gomez alias “Ka Remy,” 32; Ruth Liberty Vudade-Abalong, 29; Evan Balaguis alias “Ka Lina,” 23; Renato Nucum alias “Toys,” 52; and Aries Nucum alias “Ka Amy, 25.

They were brought to the Mexico Community Hospital for treatment after the clash, but all were pronounced dead by doctors, provincial police spokesperson Superintendent Anna Liza Guzman said.

One Ryan Lising, 28, was arrested after authorities found him carrying a loaded caliber-.45 pistol, she said.

The clash occurred around 1:20 a.m. in Brgy. San Jose Matulid.

Elements of the provincial police’s intelligence branch, Special Weapons and Tactics unit, and Mexico Police carried out an operation after learning of the presence of MLPP-RHB members in the area, Recomono said in a text message.

The suspects were allegedly involved in incidents of robbery/hold-up, car thefts, as well as gun-for-hire and extortion activities, in Pampanga and nearby provinces, he said.

Operatives seized four short firearms, two Carbine rifles, an M16 rifle, a hand grenade, a bow and three arrows, a crossbow, subversive documents, electronic gadgets, and a pair of binoculars from the suspects, Guzman said.

Four unregistered motorcycles were also found at the scene, Recomono said.

The MLPP-RHB, whose members are mostly based in Central Luzon, is a group that broke away from the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army in the 90s. (John Roson)

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An Army soldier was arrested after holding hostage and stabbing a woman and her young son in Pilar, Sorsogon, on Thursday, police said.

Arrested was Pfc. Joel Magdalena, an active member of the 92nd Division Reconnaissance Company based in Aroroy, Masbate, Sorsogon provincial police spokesman Superintendent Nonito Marquez said.

The incident occurred in Brgy. Marifosque around 6:30 a.m.

Magdalena, a resident of Pili, Camarines Sur, was first seen creating a scene by brandishing a piece of wood and hitting people around him with it, Marquez said in an emailed report.

Magdalena also tried to hit PO2 Ronnel Perfecto, who happened to pass by on his motorcycle, but the policeman evaded the blow and tried to pacify the soldier, he said.

The soldier, however, ran and entered a home, where he took two knives and held hostage house owner Grace Manzanero and her young son, Marquez said.

This prompted Perfecto, barangay tanod Arnel Quintana, and one Jean Deponturom to enter the house to stop Magdalena from causing harm.

Magdalena, however, stabbed Manzanero and her son to the different parts of the body, Marquez said.

Perfecto, Quintana, and Deponturom later wrested from Magdalena the 13-inch and 11-inch knives he used. The soldier suffered injuries when he resisted arrest. 

Manzanero, her son, and Magdalena were brought to the Donsol District Hospital for treatment.

The soldier was later taken to the Pilar Police Station for investigation and filing of charges, Marquez said. (John Roson)

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The Office of Civil Defense in Calabarzon (OCD 4A) has recommended that people living near trees and big structures be evacuated during storms, after typhoon “Glenda” caused many casualties in the region.

“Those living near large structures like billboards, walls, electric and communication posts, as well as trees, should also be warned and encouraged to evacuate,” OCD 4A director Vicente Tomazar said in a report to Defense Secretary Voltaire Gazmin, who chairs the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council.

Currently, only people living in areas prone to floods, landslides, and storm surges are covered by plans of pre-emptive evacuation.

But it was observed that most of the 66 people killed and 96 injured as of Sunday in Cavite, Batangas, Laguna, Rizal, and Quezon were hit by uprooted trees, collapsing walls, and other falling debris, said Tomazar, who also chairs the Regional Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council.

In a full council meeting of the RDRRMC 4A on Friday, it was also recommended that trees along highways and major roads be trimmed, or the planting of trees in such areas be discouraged altogether.

Toppled trees and posts left roads impassable, especially for rescuers, Tomazar said.

Meanwhile, Tomazar recommended that the government also come up with an “emergency communications strategy” that could be used during disasters, as regional authorities were practically cut off from national and local agencies for hours, after Glenda struck.

“The storm crippled telecommunication facilities, disrupting emergency services. Due to this, information at the higher DRRMC was limited,” he said.

As of Sunday morning, the RDRRMC 4A recorded 667,497 affected persons, 106,539 destroyed houses, and P661.37 million worth of damage, but has yet to receive information from some areas in Quezon, Laguna, and Batangas because of communication problems.

Glenda’s effects on the region’s economy “have yet to be fully reckoned,” the council said.

Tomazar cited the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical, and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) as one of the national agencies inaccessible during Glenda’s onsluaught.

“The forecasting capability of DOST-PAGASA was very much appreciated, it was very accurate. But its accessibility on the website was a major issue during the passage of the typhoon” he said.

Tomazar admitted that current incident management plans and procedures “fell short” and that the local DRRMC system, though well coordinated, was “overwhelmed” by Glenda, which is now considered as one of the most destructive storms that hit Calabarzon.

“Improved operational plans could have better mitigated the typhoon’s tragic effects,” he said. (John Roson)

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A barangay chairman and his wife were killed while two others were injured when the pick-up they were riding exploded in Laurel, Batangas, Friday night, police said.

Nestorio Rodriguez, chairman of Brgy. Buso Buso, and his wife Eusebia died at a hospital in Tanauan City, Laurel Police chief Senior Insp. Ireneo Bajado said by phone.

Rodriguez’s companions, brothers Jimmy and Maximo Sarmiento, were injured, Bajado said.

The explosion occurred past 11 p.m., while the Rodriguezes and Sarmientos were travelling along a road in Brgy. Gulod, on a Mitsubishi L200 pickup (DSL-276).

The blast bore a hole to the vehicle’s underside, near the right side of the gearbox, Bajado said.

“Nung sumabog, napaatras yung sasakyan at tumama sa matigas na putik sa gilid ng kalsada,” he said.

Investigation showed that the Rodriguezes and Sarmientos had just come from the town proper and were on the way home.

The victims were rushed to the Laurel District Hospital and later transferred to the Mercado Hospital in Tanauan, where Rodriguez and his wife expired.

Members of the Explosives and Ordnance Disposal (EOD) unit and Scene of the Crime Operatives were called in to determine what caused the blast.

“Sabi nung taga-EOD parang explosive daw, parang granada,” Bajado said.

Investigators are still trying to determine who carried out the attack. (John Roson)

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Three people were confirmed killed while three others remain missing due to incidents caused by tropical storm “Maring” and the southwest monsoon in different parts of Luzon, including Metro Manila, authorities said Monday.

Two persons were killed when a dike in Tanza, Cavite, collapsed amid heavy rains around 8 a.m Monday, Vicente Tomazar, director of the Office of Civil Defense-Calabarzon, said in a phone interview.

On Sunday afternoon, a passenger jeepney figured in an accident in Sitio Lenneng, Cabugao, Apayao, leaving Franco Pedrito Cawayan dead and nine other persons seriously injured, the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council said in a report.

Also on Sunday, 31 tourists and tour guides were trapped inside the Sumaguing Cave in Sagada, Mt. Province, when rainwater flooded the cave, Insp. Kristine Gamboa, Sagada Police chief, said.

Thirty of the group, including some Japanese nationals, have been rescued but a female tourist from Pangasinan remains missing as of Monday noon, Gamboa told Bandera.

One Rosalino Calantay, 30, and Monching Bakidan, 20, were also reported missing after they were carried away while trying to cross rivers in Tubo, Abra, and Bontoc, Mt. Province, the NDRRMC said.

Heavy rains brought by tropical strom “Maring” and the southwest monsoon also caused at least six landslides in Abra, the agency said.

In Cavite province, parts of Tanza, Rosario, Bacoor, Noveleta, and Carmona towns suffered floods like San Pedro, Binan, and Sta. Rosa of Laguna, Tomazar said.

“Mataas ang tubig ngayon sa Laguna Lake… apektado ‘yung mga coastal municipalities ng lawa,” he said, adding that many families were forced to flee their homes and take shelter in 11 evacuation centers.

Evacuations were also reported in San Mateo, Rodriguez, and Cainta towns of Rizal province, Tomazar said.

In Batangas, evacuations were also recorded in Lipa City, Sto. Tomas, and Alitagtag, Senior Insp. Dwight Fonte, Batangas provincial police spokesman, said.

In Metro Manila, at least 119 families or 557 persons evacuated in Makati City and Marikina City, the NDRRMC said. (John Roson)

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(Update) Twelve people were killed while seven others were injured when the utility vehicle they were riding fell into a ravine in Buguias, Benguet, on Saturday afternoon, police said.

Twenty passengers were found at the crash site, but 11 died while being brought to the hospital, Supt. Davy Vicente Lim-mong, Cordillera regional police spokesman, said.

The 11 were identified as Biana Olsim, Manuel Langbis, Bino Waclin, Melania Madiano, Alfredo Pattian, Ferdilyn Igualdo, Arnaldo Madiano, Kimberly Waclin, Ema Tosay, Melanio Igualdo, and Melin Dasdas, all residents of Brgy. Poblacion, Buguias.

One passenger, Marrieta Gaspil, was brought to the Benguet General Hospital (BGH) but she expired while undergoing treatment, Lim-mong said.

Seven others, including driver Ambrocio Menzi, passengers Basilio Baldos, Oronio Agyapas, Nicole Waclin, Wela Waclin, Braille Waclin, and a still unidentified man are being treated at the BGH, he said.

Another passenger, identified as Jerry Bisaya Atas, was not hurt as he was able to jump off the vehicle when he noticed that it was going the wrong way, Lim-mong said.

The incident occurred around 2:30 p.m. along the Halsema Highway in Bayoyo, Brgy. Buyacaoan.

Menzi was driving the Ford Fiera utility vehicle (AAD-874) towards Brgy. Abatan when it fell into a ravine more or less 80 meters deep, Lim-mong said.

Initial investigation showed that the driver lost control of the vehicle due to a sudden downpour and heavy fog, he said. (John Roson)

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post updated. see update here

Ten people were killed while at least 10 others were injured when the utility vehicle they were riding fell into a ravine in Buguias, Benguet, on Saturday afternoon, police said.

Twenty passengers were pulled out of the crash site, but 10 died while being brought to the hospital, Supt. Davy Vicente Lim-mong, Cordillera regional police spokesman, said in a text message, citing initial field reports.

The injured are still undergoing treatment at the Abatan and Lutheran hospitals, with some being recommended for transfer to medical facilities in Baguio City, he said.

The incident occurred around 2:30 p.m. in Brgy. Bayoyo.

The Ford Fiera utility vehicle (AAD-874) was heading towards Brgy. Abatan when it fell into a ravine more or less 80 meters deep, Lim-mong said. (John Roson) post updated. see update here

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Five men allegedly involved in criminal activities were found dead after being hacked and shot by still unidentified assailants in Bugallon, Pangasinan, early Saturday, police said.

Romel, 38, Jomer, 17, Ronald, 34, Ernesto, 49 – all surnamed Ramoran – and Albert Martinez, 25, were found dead inside a shanty beside the Grand Royale Subdivision in Brgy. Poblacion, Senior Insp. Ryan Manongdo, Pangasinan provincial police spokesman, said.

The five, all natives of Sual, were eating around 12:30 a.m. when they were killed by about 10 armed and bonnet-wearing men, Manongdo said.

Investigation indicated that the armed men first held the five at gunpoint, tied up the hands and feet of Jomer and Albert with plastic straps, then hacked the duo’s heads with a bladed instrument, he said.

“When Rommel, Ernesto, and Ronald attempted to fight back, they were shot on the different parts of the body. As a consequence, all victims died on the spot,” Manongdo said in a text message.

Responding policemen found 16 empty shells and five slugs of caliber-.45 pistols and 14 plastic straps at the scene. A fan knife and a cellphone were recovered from Rommel and Albert’s bodies, respectively.

Investigators are looking at a possibility that the killings are related to the victims’ alleged involvement in criminal activities.

Information gathered from the area indicated that the five were engaged in robbery (akyat-bahay), cattle rustling, and theft, Manongdo said.

It was also learned that Rommel had been convicted for a case of robbery with acts of lasciviousness but was granted parole last April, the provincial police spokesman added.

Members of the Bugallon Police are still conducting an “in-depth investigation” to determine the assailants’ identities, he said. (John Roson)

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Eight policemen were killed while seven others were injured in an ambush by New People’s Army (NPA) members in Allacapan, Cagayan, early Monday, police said.

Killed were PO3 Vladimir Tabarejo, PO2 Dexter Cubilla, PO2 Angelbert Mateo, PO2 Elmark Rodney Pinated, PO2 Jonnel Bowat, PO2 Ronald Castulo, PO1 Eric Brioso, and PO1 Jerome Sanchez, all members of the Special Action Force’s (SAF) 24th Company, Senior Insp. Cesar Orlanes, Cagayan provincial police spokesman, said in a phone interview.

PO2 Ronald Gomez, PO2 Jeopano Adang, PO2 Ricky Monay, PO2 Jeofrey Amilagan, PO2 Jeofrey Elasco, and PO1 Ephraim Dolete, also members of the SAF’s 24th Company, were still being treated at the hospital as of this writing.

The policemen were passing through the boundary of Brgys. Cataratan and Centro West around 8:30 a.m., when a landmine explosion hit their troop carrier, Orlanes said.

After the blast, about 30 fully-armed rebels fired upon the police team, which was heading towards the town proper to undergo electrocardiogram (ECG) tests, a requirement for an upcoming physical fitness test, he said.

“Some of them (policemen) were even in their athletic uniforms because they were supposed to undergo ECG,” he said.

Despite being injured, some of the policemen engaged the rebels in a firefight, but it was still unknown if the rebels also suffered casualties, Orlanes said.

“Firearms were also reportedly taken from them (policemen), but we have yet to receive information what types these are,” he said.

After the incident, additional policemen arrived at the area to reinforce the ambushed troops and brought the wounded to the Ballesteros District Hospital.

Castulo was among those who were brought to the hospital, but he expired while undergoing treatment, Orlanes said.

Other policemen were still pursuing the rebels as of this writing. (John Roson)

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Photo courtesy of Quezon Police Provincial Office

Photo courtesy of Quezon Police Provincial Office

Nine people, including four minors, died after a passenger bus collided with and dragged the tricycle they were riding, along the Maharlika Highway in Calauag, Quezon, early Sunday, police said.

Passengers Natividad Breva, 51; Federico Ebiernas, 44; Letecia Ebiernas, 43; Jackielyn Casabon, 29; Krizel Pera, 14; Glicel Casabon, 9; Daniela Olanda, 9; and Kathleen Casabon, 7, died on the spot while their driver Redentor Olanda, 37, was declared dead at the St. Peter Hospital, Quezon provincial police spokesman Chief Insp. Ediclle Canals said.

The incident occurred around 7:25 a.m., while Olanda was driving the tricycle along the highway’s portion in Brgy. Biyan.

The tricycle was heading towards Calauag town proper when it was hit by the Arandia Bus Line unit (EVN-970) being driven by Albert Oli from Manila to Bicol, Canals said.

The bus dragged the tricycle some 56 meters from the point of impact, he said.

Investigation showed that Oli overtook another bus by using the opposite lane, causing his bus to collide head on with Olanda’s tricycle.

Oli’s bus suffered heavy damage due to the strong impact, while the tricycle was totally wrecked, Canals said.

The fatalities’ bodies have been brought to a local funeral parlor while Oli is now detained at the Calauag Police Station.

Charges of reckless imprudence resulting in multiple homicide and damage to property are now being prepared against the bus driver, Canals said. (John Roson)

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