ZAMBOANGA CITY (Mindanews/15 July) – One of the three members of a fishing boat crew kidnapped over three months ago off Sulu was released after the captive’s family paid ransom to the Abu Sayyaf, Director Felicisimo Khu, Directorate for Integrated Police Operations (DIPO)-West, said.
Khu said the victim, Jonald Ocsimar, was freed around 8 p.m. Wednesday in Barangay Buhanginan, Patikul, Sulu.
Ocsimar, the quarter master of the Mega 8 Light Boat, was kidnapped March 19 along with boat captain Renato Panisales and assistant engineer Wennie Ferrer.
The victims, who were working for a Zamboanga City-based fishing firm, were fishing near Menes Island in Panglima Tahil municipality when they were kidnapped by the Abu Sayyaf led by Nasir Timbang.
Khu disclosed that Timbang’s group freed Ocsimar after his family reportedly paid P300,000 to the kidnappers.
He said they learned that some relatives of Ocsimar went last Tuesday to Barangay Kaunayan, Patikul and negotiated with the group of Timbang.
Khu’s office received reports that Timbang and his followers were seen bringing with them a hostage, who turned out to be Ocsimar, to Barangay Buhanginan, Patikul, a day after the negotiations took place.
Khu said a follow-up report received by his office disclosed that Ocsimar was reunited with his family Wednesday night.
Khu said they have no information concerning the fate of the two other crew members who are still in captivity. (MindaNews)