AGENTS of the Philippine National Police Anti-Kidnapping Group early morning yesterday raided a notorious kidnapping-for-ransom gang’s safehouse in Indang, Cavite and shot dead three heavily-armed suspects in a gunbattle, PNP-AKG director, Colonel Jonnel C. Estomo said.
In a report to PNP chief, General Oscar D. Albayalde, Estomo said the suspects were members of the notorious Pacia KFR Gang led by dismissed policeman Magdaleno F. Pacia Jr. who remained at-large and is still being hunted as of press time.
The suspects were believed to be acting in cahoots with casino loan shark rings known for kidnapping Chinese nationals who borrowed gambling money from them but failed to pay their debts and their huge interests on time.
The official said the real identifies of the suspects slain during the firefight in a house in Barangay Kayquit 1, Kayquit Road in Indang, Cavite around 2:48 a.m. yesterday are still being verified by investigators.
One of the three was identified only as alias’ Vince Pigsa’ who was described as a henchman of Pacia who had the rank of Police Officer 3 when fired from the police force.
According to Estomo, they raided the kidnappers’ hideout on the strength of a search warrant for violation of Republic Act 10591 or the Comprehensive Firearms and Ammunition Regulations Act of 2013 issued by Judge Cynthia R Mariño-Ricablanca of the Santa Cruz, Laguna Fourth Judicial Region.
He said that with the assistance of members of the Indang Municipal Police Station and the Police Regional Office 4-A Regional Intelligence Division, they stormed the suspects’ place where they were met with gunfire prompting them to retaliate.
The encounter resulted in the killing of the three suspects who yielded one M-16 automatic rifle, a Beretta pistol and one cal. .45 pistol as well as dozens of live ammunition and several loaded magazines.
A red Suzuki Ertiga believed being used by the suspects in their kidnapping-for-ransom activities was impounded by the PNP-AKG.
Estomo said that apart from fighting KFR gangs in their list, they now faced with a new scourge: casino-related kidnapping-for-ransom cases in the country wherein foreign victims have been forced to pay billions of pesos to their compatriots-turned kidnappers.