POLICE late evening Monday shot dead a high-ranking New People’s Army leader wanted for his involvement in a series of atrocities in Mindanao during a gunbattle in Cebu City, a report to Philippine National Police chief, General Camilo Pancratius P. Cascolan said yesterday.
Police Regional Office 7 director, Brigadier Gen. Albert Ignatius D. Ferro identified the slain suspect as Dennis Paradeno Rodina alias’ Ka Jazzy/Mayin/Butchok/Perot,’ tagged as the commanding officer of the NPA’s Southern Mindanao Regional Party Committee’s Regional Special Operations Command and the 1st Deputy Secretary of the same NPA regional committee.
“We have neutralized one of the most wanted NPA leaders involved in the murder and kidnapping of scores of government forces and civilians and attacks on public and private infrastructures which have resulted in the loss of billions of pesos in the past,” said Ferro.
The official said that the elusive NPA leader engaged members of the PRO7 Regional Intelligence Division, the Task Group CBS (Cebu, Bohol and Siquijor), Regional Mobile Force Battalion’s SWAT Team and the Cebu City Police Office in a firefight in Sitio Lower Lamacan in Barangay Pung-ol Sibugay in Cebu City 10:15 p.m. Monday.
Ferro said that the raiding team returned fire killing the 44-year old native of Magpet, North Cotabato on the spot. The slain suspect’s live-in partner Jerlie Mercado alias ‘Tamsi,’ Brian Moralde and Rodelyn Moralde were also arrested during the operation and are now facing criminal charges.
Recovered during the raid were one caliber .45 pistol with several live ammunition, several belongings of the slain suspect and a silver gray Kia Rio with plate no. ABN 2146.
The PRO7 director said that Mercado, 39, was identified as a finance officer of the same NPA group and is acting as a personal secretary of Rodina. She is also the subject of a warrant of arrest for a murder case.
On the other hand, the two Moraldes were arrested after they violently resisted the raid and tried to prevent the lawmen from going after the two other suspects. Both are now facing charges for obstruction of justice.
According to Ferro, Rodina is the subject of three warrants of arrest for murder issued by three different Tagum City regional trial courts; a case for multiple murder issued by the Nabunturan, Compostela Valley Provincial Prosecutor’s Office; a case for illegal possession of explosives issued by the Tangub City RTC Branch 16 in Misamis Occidental; and another theft case issued by a Mindanao judge.
A record check showed that the slain suspect joined the NPA movement in 1998 using the aliases ‘Ka Dondon/Ka Demz.’
On May 7 and June 5, 2009, the suspect was believed to have been involved in the murder of militiamen Arnold Sacares and Ernesto Gumilid in Bgy. Simata, Molave, Zamboanga del Sur and Bgy. Penacio in Clarin, Misamis Occidental respectively.
Ferro said that the suspect is also wanted for his role in the burning of several heavy equipment owned by the Red Mountain Mining Corporation in Agusan del Sur. On May 3, 2011, he was convicted for illegal possession of explosives and was sentenced to reclusion perpetua by Judge Sylvia Singidas-Machacon.
However, Rodina was rescued by NPA rebels who raided a Bureau of Jail Management and Penology facility in Bgy. Sinuda in Kitaotao, Bukidnon where they also abducted four BJMP officers in July 2011.
“Rodina is a notorious NPA leader in Region 1 where he is wanted for his role in various atrocities against government troops, civilians and private companies,” said Ferro.
Ferro said they have also documented the involvement of the slain suspect in the following atrocities:
# the raid at the mining compound owned by one Mayor JB Brillantes where they stole several high-powered firearms, hundreds of live ammunition and explosives;
# the abduction and murder of Loreto, Agusan del Sur Mayor Dario Otaza and his son on October 19, 2015;
# the disarming of barangay security forces in Bgy. Mahongkog in Arakan, North Cotabato on April 9, 2017;
# the attack at the Lapanday plastic plant in Bgy. Mandug, Buhangin District in Davao City; the Macondray plastic plant in Bgy. Tagpore, Panabo City in Davao Oriental; and the Lorenzo Farm in Bgy. Pangyan in Calinan District, Davao City, all on April 29, 2017. An estimated P2 billion worth of properties were destroyed during the attack at the three establishments owned by the Lorenzo Group of Companies;
# the July 18, 2017 ambush of some members of the Presidential Security Group at the boundary of Arakan, North Cotabato and Bgy. Marahan in Marilog District; and the burning of some heavy equipment owned by the Ulticon Builders Incorporated in Bgy. Callawa in Buhangin District on March 31, 2018.