Co-Founder, members of notorious gang arrested

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The alleged co-founder and two members of the Parojinog/Kuratong Baleleng Group were recently arrested by authorities in a checkpoint in San Fernando City, La Union. In a report, Police Chief Supt. Romulo Sapitula, regional director of Police Regional Office 1, identified the suspects as Manuelito Estomata Francisco, his wife and Ozamiz City Councilor Rizalina Ozamis Francisco and their son June Ozamiz Francisco alias Omboy. Manuelito is the alleged co-founder of the group that was notorious for criminal activities linked to the of Parojinog political clan in Misamis Occidental. According to Sapitula, the family was arrested in the checkpoint after the police flagged down a Toyota Innova. “Based on our operatives’ investigation report, Manuelito is allegedly the co-founder of the Parojinog/Kuratong Baleleng Group, a group believed to be involved in illegal activities such as robbery, extortion and illegal drugs, among others. The family left their home after the death of Mayor Reynaldo Parojinog. They were arrested while travelling to Manila from the Ilocos provinces,” he said. The family was arrested under a warrant of arrest issued by Judge Edmundo Pintac of Regional Trial Court 10th Judicial Region, Branch 15, Ozamiz City, dated February 6, 2018 for the crime of violation of Republic Act 9516 with no recommended bail bond. They are currently in the City of San Fernando Police Station for temporary detention prior to their turnover to the issuing court. The Kuratong Baleleng Group is an organized crime syndicate in the country that was linked to numerous criminal activities such as robbery, smuggling, kidnapping, murder, extortion, drugs and illegal gambling. Previous intelligence sources identified Manuelito as one of the individuals who was affiliated with the Parojinog family. The Parojinogs were linked to the illegal drug trade by President Rodrigo Duterte himself. A bloody raid in Ozamiz City led to the death of the patriarch of the Parojinogs, Ozamiz City Mayor Reynaldo “Aldong” Parojinog, in July 2017.

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