DAVAO CITY (MindaNews/11 July) — A Chinese businesswoman kidnapped on July 5 in Quezon City was rescued here on Thursday during a noontime operation that left three suspects dead and ten others the object of a manhunt.
Mayor Rodrigo Duterte has ordered a lockdown to prevent suspected kidnappers riding in two white Mitsubishi Montero SUVs from leaving the city.
Sr. Supt. Ronald dela Rosa, city police director, told reporters that the mayor “ordered me to shoot to kill the criminals if they will fight back.”
Sally Chua, 51-year-old resident of San Francisco, Quezon City was abducted in Quezon City on July 5 and brought to Davao supposedly to withdraw her ransom money.
Two of the suspects were killed in a shootout with police at around 11:20 a.m. while another died on the way to the Southern Philippines Medical Center.
Police recovered seven firearms from the SUV, a grenade, one fake plate and boxes of pomelos and mangosteen.
Also recovered from the kidnappers were an M4 rifle, three KG9 rifles and three handguns and an Army ring.
Kidnappers booked Chua on a Thursday afternoon flight to Manila.
Dela Rosa said the operations were coordinated with Camp Crame. He said they were tipped off on July 10 about the presence in the city of the “Bye Bye” Kidnap for Ransom Group.
He said the group brought their captive from Quezon City via the roll on roll off (RORO) barge, after having been convinced by Chua that the money for her ransom could be withdrawn only at the Davao City branch along CM Recto.
Chief Superintendent Jaime Morente, regional police chief, said Chua made sure the transaction would occur here as she was sure that Davao City police would be able to stop the kidnappers.
Dela Rosa said the abductors had first asked for P100 million ransom but Chua haggled to bring it down until the kidnappers settled for P15 million.
He said one of the Montero Sport getaway SUVs was waiting outside the bank, in “combat parking,” where the car is parked facing the street to allow easier escape.
One Montero car was later discovered to be registered to a certain Nelson Doloiras of Sorsogon, with temporary plate number BW3086.
The other Monteros were brand new and parked far from the crime scene, with one bearing plate number FBI 1238 and the other having a conduction sticker.
“The package is safe”
Based on initial investigation, police suspect one or two of the suspects were former soldiers, because of a ring found at the crime scene.
Before the operation, authorities here had sent bank personnel a faxed photograph of the victim.
Plainclothes policemen first secured the victim from inside the bank and told the SWAT team outside that “the package is safe.”
SWAT members then shot the suspects at the parked Montero, immediately killing two. The third died on the way to the hospital.
A suspect accompanying Chua was caught and interrogated.
Dela Rosa asked the public to inform the police in case they see the escaped vehicles, presuming the escaped suspected kidnappers are still in the city.
“You listen carefully, I told criminals not to f__k it here in the city,” Duterte told reporters.
Duterte is on his 10th day as returning mayor after serving the term 2010 to 2013 as vice mayor to Mayor Sara Duterte, his daughter.
He had earlier served as mayor from 1988 to 1998 and 2001 to 2010.
A decade ago, Duterte graced the cover of Time Magazine as “The Punisher” for warning criminals, particularly kidnappers and drug pushers that they would be killed if they mess around here.
In his inaugural address on June 30, he warned “drug pushers, drug dealers, drug suppliers, and perpetrators of heinous crimes” to stop their operations and leave the city “otherwise you will regret it.”
“The clock is ticking away the hours for you. You can leave either vertically or horizontally. It’s up to you. If you fight, the day ends permanently for you,’” Duterte said.
Duterte’s son, Paolo, now the vice mayor, called on criminals to come to the city so they will suffer the same fate as Chua’s kidnappers.
“You know how well the police works in our city. So I call on all criminals, if you want to die, come to Davao,” said the vice mayor.
“To most people in Davao, life is here. But to criminals, your life ends here,” dela Rosa said. (MindaNews)