‘Terror group backer’ slain, bomb materials seized in SoCot raids

‘Terror group backer’ slain, bomb materials seized in SoCot raids

BOMB-MAKING MATERIALS. Photo shows the rifle grenades, blasting cap, and electrical wires recovered from the house of an alleged bomb-maker affiliated with the Dawlah Islamiyah’s Hassan group in a raid on Friday (Aug. 21, 2020) in Polomolok town, South Cotabato province. A village councilor who was tagged as a drug pusher and supporter of the Islamic State-inspired group was also killed in a separate operation in the area. (PNA photo by Richelyn Gubalani)

GENERAL SANTOS CITY – A barangay councilor who was tagged as a supporter of an Islamic State-inspired local terrorist group was killed while several bomb-making materials were recovered in separate raids in Polomolok town, South Cotabato, on Friday.

Lt. Col. Alex Joe Orcjada, chief of the Polomolok municipal police station, said suspect Basit Piang Canapia was killed in a shootout with joint operatives past 5 a.m. in Purok 1, Barangay Rubber.

Canapia, an incumbent councilor of Barangay Rubber, resisted arrest during a search operation at his home for possession of illegal drugs or violation of Republic Act 9165, the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002, Orcjada said.

Orcjada said the suspect suddenly drew a handgun and opened fire, triggering a brief shootout with the operating team composed of elements from intelligence and operation units of the Police Regional Office-12, South Cotabato police, and the Army Special Forces.

Canapia was fatally wounded in the encounter and declared dead upon arrival at the Polomolok municipal hospital, the police official said.

“He was included in our drug watchlist and came out in our investigation as a supporter of the Nilong sub-group of the Dawlah Islamiyah-Hassan group,” Orcajada said in an interview.

He said the group was engaged in drug trafficking and other criminal activities in Polomolok and the neighboring areas.

Around 5:30 a.m., the police official said the operating team stormed the house of an alleged bomb-maker of the Nilong sub-group in Sitio Vio, Barangay Lapu but the suspect, identified as Jorhan Utap Palalisan, managed to escape.

Recovered at the house were two live rifle grenades, three packs of suspected shabu, blasting cap, and electrical wires, he said.

Orcjada said pursuit operations are ongoing against Palalisan, who had been also linked to gun-running activities in the area. (PNA)

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