CAMP SANG-AN, Labangan, ZDS – Third highest ranking member of the Abu Sayyaf Kidnapper Group was arrested by the joint Army’s 44th Infantry Battalion and PNP operation in Brgy Canacan, Kabasalan, Zamboanga Sibugay province 5:00 p.m. Wednesday, September 25, 2019.
“Nasirin Balajadji, was apprehended by the virtue of warrant of arrest for the crime of kidnapping for ransom with no bail recommended”, said Lt. Col. Don Templonuevo, 44th Battalion commander.
“Balajadji was involved in the kidnapping of Baker Atyani, a Jordanian Journalist sometime in 2012," added Templonuevo.
According to Police Col. Jerry Protacio, PNP Provincial Director, “He was also involved in the abduction of Roland Del Torchio, an Italian retired Catholic priest and the kidnapping of Rexon Romoc, an eight-year old boy who was held captive by the group for seven months in 2016”.
The arrested kidnapper is now in the custody of PNP for proper disposition and filing of the case.
Meanwhile, Col. Leonel Nicolas., 102nd Infantry Brigade Commander, who has operational jurisdiction of Zamboanga Sibugay said that, “The arrest was attributed to the report of a peace-loving and concerned civilian in our area of responsibility”.
For his part, Maj. Gen. Roberto Ancan, the 1st Infantry Division and Joint Task Force Zampelan (Zamboanga Peninsula and Lanao Provinces) commander, commended the efforts of the troops as well as the concerned civilian.
“The arrest of the top kidnapper is a significant accomplishment for the peace-loving constituents of our area of responsibility,” said Ancan.
“With our relentless collaboration with PNP, rest assured that we will continuously neutralize, defeat or destroy threat groups to sustain the gains of peace in Western Mindanao”, Ancan concluded.
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