Thursday, March 31, 2011

Kidnap for First Quarter,2011 Part III:Frank Chung and Randelle Talania

On February 21, 2011 54 year old Frank Chung of Midsayap,North Cotabato must have experienced de ja vu as yet another KFR (Kidnap for Ransom) attempt was made against him.The owner of Midsayap's largest hardware store had managed to escape harm in the first attack which took place on September 17, 2010 and did it by outwitting his assailants.In the first case Mr.Chung had been opening his hardware store when gunmen suddenly grabbed him and tried to force him into an idling SUV.The Tsinoy (Chinese Filipino) then faked a heart attack and collapsed onto the sidewalk in front of his shoppe.Unable to lift Mr.Chung, who stands 6'2,"the would be kidnappers panicked and quickly left the scene.

In this latest case he was once again grabbed while opening his store,FMC Hardware,in Barangay Poblacion.Unbeknownst to Mr.Chung,as he was occupied with trying to open the metal gate in front of his business,a green pickup truck slowed as it approached him with the occupants craning their necks to scrutinise his actions.As the would be kidnappers examined Mr.Chung however,a CVO (Civilian Voluntary Organization,a CAA,or Civilian Active Auxiliary,element sublimated to municipal police departments in areas affected by Islamic Insurgencies) soldier was carefully watching their every move.As the pickup moved past the shoppe and was about to turn at the next corner the CVO soldier moved to stop the truck,having already radioed in his concerns.

Before the CVO soldier could reach the pickup truck a man wearing a black jacket jumped out of the passenger side door and began almost jogging to FMC and Mr.Chung.Other CVO soldiers ran to cut him off at which point the man in the black jacket had second thoughts and did his best to run back to the green truck.Seeing the other CVO soldier at the truck the man in the black jacket pulled out a 45 caliber pistol from his waistband and reeled around.Before the gunman could get a shot off however 3 CVO personnel began firing their M1 rifles.Still doing his best to reach the truck tand what he had hoped would be his escape he gunman was shot in his buttocks.The truck then gunned its gas pedal and drove around the single CVO soldier trying to stop it.The gunman, now moderately wounded then made a run for a petrol station at the corner nearest FMC.Running past a bedspacer (rooming house) he almost ran head on into an elderly occupant of that boarding house.At that point the gunman took the old man as a hostage,intending to use him as a human shield.Managing to flank the gunman though,a CVO soldier got behind him and shot him in the back,killing him.

By then the 40IB (Infantry Battalion) was rushing to the scene.Having heard about the truck's escape the army (40IB) sent several small detachments to act as Blocking Forces to prevent the rest of the kidnap team from disappearing into Ligusan Marsh.A composite Blocking Force of the 40IB and the village CAFGU (Civilian Auxiliary Forces Geographical Unit, another CAA element,this one sublimated to the army) spotted the green pickup truck as it entered Barangay Pomologan,roughly 10km from the botched kidnapping. Pomolok is 1 of many towns that provide a route of entry into Ligusan Marsh and so that Blocking Force detachment moved into defencive positions only to have the truck come to a halt 1km away from the marsh due to its tires shaving been shredded by bullets.Five men quickly got out of the truck and engaged in a running firefight.Within minutes 3 of the 5 gunmen were laying dead,1 had disappeared into a canal leading into the marsh and the 5th man meekly surrendered to soldiers from the 40IB.

The captured man,21 year old Esmael Mamison,a Maguindanowan Tribesman with no understanding of Cebuano,Ilonggo,Tagalog OR English said that he had been recruited just that morning and therefore claimed he could offer little in the way of valuable information.The first man killed,the kidnapper in the black jacket was identified as the epononymously named Abubakar.According to municipal officials and the PNP (Philippine National Police) the assailents were BIFF guerillas (Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters, the new MILF breakaway group led by Kumamder Ustadz Ameril Ombra Kato).Kato himself denied the accusation.Inside the abandoned pickup truck authorities discovered one M16, two 45 caliber pistols and two M79 grenades.

Later,a local Islamic Cleric again accused the BIFF of having committed the attempted kidnapping.Ustadz Ome (sic) Ikhayr said that the kidnappers were new BIFF recruits who had been given the operation as a "Test Mission"before full membership.Of course noone has ever heard of this"cleric"so that noone awards the accusation any credibility.

On March 09, 2011 in Barangay Poblacion,Titay,Zamboanga Sibugay Province,9 year old Randelle Talania, son of Barangay Capt.Rose Marie Talania of Barangay Namnama in that same town was standing in front of the fence surrounding his school waiting for a ride home from Randelle stood in front of Titay Central School's fence a white van pulled up next to him.Immediately two men opened the side panel of the cargo van,grabbed yound Randelle and threw him into the vehichle before getting in themselves.Driving off through Barangay Poblacion three eye witnesses alerted school officials of the kidnapping and mentioned that the van had taken off towards the town of Kalawit in that same province.By the time a composite force of PNP (Philippine National Police) and AFP (Armed Forces of the Philippines) arrived in Kalawit the kidnappers had already arrived,switched vehicles,and set fire to their abandoned van before departing Barangay Marcelo.

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