Village chief in ‘narco-list’ nabbed for illegal guns, ammo

GENERAL SANTOS CITY (MindaNews / 01 February) — Joint operatives arrested on Wednesday for alleged possession of illegal firearms and ammunition a village chief in Surallah town in South Cotabato who was included in President Rodrigo R. Duterte’s “narco-list.”

Chief Insp. Aldrin Gonzales, public information officer of the Police Regional Office (PRO)-12, said Thursday Barangay Upper Sepaka chair Pudi Udasan Ambalgan, 54, was nabbed after yielding three unlicensed firearms and ammunition during a raid at his home.

Armed with three search warrants, he said operatives stormed Ambalgan’s house at the village center on Wednesday morning.

He said the raiding team was composed of personnel from the PRO-12’s Regional Police Drug Enforcement Unit, South Cotabato Provincial Mobile Force Company, Surallah municipal police station and the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA)-Region 12.

“He (Ambalgan) is a level 2 high value target and included in the PRO-12’s priority list of personalities involved in illegal drugs,” he said in a statement.

Gonzales said the search warrants were for violation of Republic Act (RA) 9165 or Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002, RA 10591 or illegal possession of firearms and ammunition, and RA 9516 for possession of explosives, he said.

He said the raiding team recovered from Ambalgan’s possession a caliber 30 Carbine M1 rifle with serial number 1639150 loaded with 11 bullets, a caliber 45 Colt pistol with serial number 941538 loaded with seven bullets and a caliber 45 pistol with serial number 736414 inserted with a magazine containing five bullets and a caliber 30 steel magazine with 11 live bullets.

The police official noted that the search operation and inventory of the recovered evidences were witnessed by several members of the barangay council and reporters.

He said the suspect was subjected to medical examination and was later turned over to the Surallah municipal police station for temporary detention pending the filing of charges for illegal possession of firearms and ammunition.

Ambalgan was arrested along with his son and brother-in-law in November 2015 in a drug operation led by PDEA-12 agents at a house in Purok Lovers, Barangay Ambalgan in Sto. Nino town, but was later released on bail.

Seized during the operation were a 12-gauge shot gun, a caliber 38 revolver, assorted ammunition and various drug paraphernalia. (MindaNews)