Operations vs loose firearms, uncover murder suspect

SEPARATE raids conducted by the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) Saturday yielded more than targeted loose firearms after two of those arrested in connection with the police operations turned out to be a murder suspect and a possible gun-for-hire.

Police Director Samuel D. Pagdilao, Jr., CIDG chief, said CIDG agents implementing a search warrant issued by local courts against Patrick A. Caronan of Valleyview Royale Subdivision recovered a number of illegal firearms and ammunition in the latter’s residence at around 11:00 p.m. Saturday Aug. 31, 2012.

Among the items found in Caronan’s residence is a Colt armalite rifle, a cal .45 pistol, a Bentley 12 guage shotgun, a Daewoo 9mm pistol, an Armscor cal .38 revolver, a fragmentation granade, and assorted magazines and ammunition.

As a result of the recovery of the loose firearms and ammunition, the CIDG arrested Caronan and four companions present in his residence.

One of the suspects, Victor S. Belardo, was later found to have a standing warrant of arrest for murder issued by Branch 18 of the Tagaytay City Regional Trial Court (RTC).

Meanwhile on the same day, Pagdilao said CIDG Region 12 operatives confiscated loose firearms in a residence in General Santos City.

At about 3:00 p.m. Saturday, CIDG operatives together with Community Investigative Support (CIS) implemented a search warrant issued by Branch 35 of the General Santos City RTC against Edwin P. Aficionado at his residence in Paradise Subdivision in Barangay Heights.

During the operation, CIDG agents recovered a cal .45 pistol, a Squibman cal. 22 rifle and a Smith and Wesson cal. 38 revolver.

Initial investigation showed the suspect has links with a gun-for-hire group operating in the region.

Pagdilao said the CIDG operation against the loose firearms that netted the aforementioned fugitive and gun-for-hire suspect would not have been successful without valuable information and assistance provided by CIS members.

“As the CIDG fulfills its task to ensure a peaceful elections next year as directed by no less than President Benigno S. Aquino III and Philippine National Police chief Police Director General Nicanor A. Bartolome themselves, we welcome the efforts of the CIS in helping us meet this mandate,” he said.

The CIS is a community-based volunteer group who have been assisting the CIDG in its operations by providing information, logistics support, among others.

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