Suspect surrenders after scary hostage drama

Chief Supt. German Doria, Region 12 police director, said suspect Willy Mola, 45, a suspected henchman of Alonto, gave himself up to the police at 10 am after agreeing to some concessions with negotiators led by local government officials and Moro leaders.

Doria said Mola took his two daughters and two grandsons hostage after he resisted arrest at 4 pm Thursday near a beach resort in Barangay Bawing here.

Senior Supt. Alfredo Toroctocon, city police director, said Mola was initially cornered by his men Thursday afternoon near the T’boli Beach Resort but armed with a .45 caliber pistol, Mola retreated to his mother’s house, taking with him his two daughters and grandsons aged four and five years old.

Toroctocon said Mola, who was visiting his family, refused to give up saying the case against him had already been dismissed and was just revived by authorities.

Mola first demanded a motorboat as his escape vehicle but later agreed to surrender only if the charges against him would be dismissed by the court. He also asked to be accompanied by members of the International Monitoring Team to Manila, where he would surrender.

Toroctocon said they sent several negotiators to persuade Mola to surrender and free his hostages. Among them were lAl Hassan and Bedoria Mindog, Councilor Eduardo Leyson III and several media men. “He finally agreed to give up after we assured him his safety and that he will be given his day in court,” Toroctocon said.

Leyson said among the concessions they promised to Mola were assurance of his family’s safety and provision of legal assistance  “so he could face the charges against him and properly clear his name”.

“We are relieved that it ended peacefully and without anyone hurt or harmed in any manner,” Doria told reporters.

Mola was among 61 inmates who escaped from the city jail here in November 2000 in a daring attack staged by followers of then detained Alonto, an alleged founder of the Pentagon kidnap gang.

After the jailbreak, Mola was reported to have joined Alonto’s group, which was tagged in a string of kidnap-for-ransom cases in south-central Mindanao. Mola denied any participation in Alonto’s kidnapping activities.

Doria said police would submit Mola to the Regional Trial Court (RTC) Branch 23, which issued an arrest warrant against the latter over his alleged involvement in a murder case. (Allen V. Estabillo / MindaNews)