• NPA rebel leader arrested; 4 others surrender

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    A high ranking official of the communist  New People’s Army (NPA) was arrested in Northern Samar, while four others voluntarily surrendered in the Western Visayas region.

    Capt. Amado Gutierrez, spokesman, Eight Infantry Division, on Thursday identified the rebel leader as Bernardo Subalisid Llave. He was arrested by virtue of a warrant of arrest for multiple murder, frustrated murder and robbery in band issued by Judge Norma Cardenas of Regional Trial Court Branch 19 of Catarman, Northern Samar.

    He said that Llave holds various positions in the rebel movement—political instructor of Security Force, Northern Samar Provincial Party Committee; secretary of Front Committee 2, Sub Regional Committee (SRC) and Executive Committee member, SRC.

    He was also a member of NPA Task Force Election 2013 and Secretary, Northern Samar NPA White Area Committee from 2007 to 2009.

    “Llave has in the past eluded arrest because of his connections. But a breakthrough came about a few days prior to his arrest, when a concerned citizen living in Barangay Molave who was a victim of his extortion called the 803rd Infantry Brigade,” Gutierrez said.

    Llave is the sixth ranking NPA leader in Eastern Visayas arrested from November 2012 to date.

    Over in Western Visayas, Maj. Ray Tiongson, spokesman, Third Infantry Division, identified the four other rebel leaders who voluntarily surrendered as alias Hassim and his wife, alias Inday, an alias Allan and alias Terso.

    Tiongson said that Hassim is vice commanding officer of Igabon Platoon, Central Front Komiteng Rehiyonal-Panay (KR-P) while his wife served as the medical officer of the said unit.

    On the other hand, Terso is the political guide of Igabon Platoon, Central Front, KR-P, while Allan is the squad leader of Baking, Igabon Platoon.

    Hassim and Inday, according to Tiongson, said went down from the mountains on July 11 and surrendered to the 61st Infantry Battalion. They turned over a hand grenade and a rifle grenade.

    Terso and Allan, who have been in the movement for nine years, surrendered on July 20 and also turned over a hand grenade, a .38 revolver with six live ammunitions and a .357 revolver.

    All four are residents of Jamindan, Capiz.

    The former rebels will receive cash from the Armed Forces of the Philippines’s (AFP’s) Guns for Peace Program based on the firearms remuneration package, which they can use as seed money to start a new life in their respective community.

    In April, the AFP’s Guns for Peace Program was launched to give cash to rebels who would trade their firearms for P200,000 to P40,000.

    Former rebels may also avail of the benefits from other government programs available like Tesda skills and livelihood programs and immediate cash assistance from the local government unit.

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