Police seize weapons cache, hunt fugitive

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ZAMBOANGA CITY: Police launched a manhunt against a man accused of murder in the southern Philippine province of Zamboanga del Norte, officials said on Wednesday.

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Officials said Alfonso Abne, alias Along, escaped a police operation in Dapitan City where authorities also arrested another man, Dindo Paglalunan, for carrying a gun.

Chief Insp. Ariel Huesca, a regional police spokesman, said Abne was inside the premises of a private beach resort when police forces tried to serve a warrant for his arrest.

He said the fugitive managed to flee and eluded arrest, but left inside a thatched hut a cache of assorted weapons, munitions and components for improvised explosives. Huesca said police forces recovered an M16 automatic rifle, eight .45 pistols, ten pistol magazines, five magazines for M16 and AK-47 assault rifles, and a blasting cap, detonating cord, time fuses, black powder, including a motorcycle which Abne was using as his get-away vehicle.

Judge Victoriano Dl Lacaya, of the Regional Trial Court Branch-9 in Dipolog City, has ordered Abne’s arrest for murder, according to Huesca.

Huesca said authorities tracked down Abne’s hideout following a tip from an informant, who said the fugitive had been spotted in several occasions inside the beach premises. It was not immediately known how Abne managed to sneak his weapons inside the guarded beach resort.

“The police team confiscated the weapons, however, the fugitive managed to evade arrest,” Huesca said.

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