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Drilon guide in Sulu held, may have betrayed TV crew–Razon

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By Joel Guinto
First Posted 16:07:00 06/19/2008

MANILA, Philippines — A guide of the television news crew that was abducted early this month has been arrested on suspicion that he “betrayed” them by leading them to their captors in the province of Sulu, Philippine National Police Chief Avelino Razon Jr. said Thursday.

Razon identified the suspect as “alias Mameng.”

“Alias Mameng is under arrest. He is in Jolo, Sulu. We investigate him. He is the one suspected to have betrayed the group of Ces Drilon,” Razon told a news conference in Camp Crame.

Drilon, her cameramen Jimmy Encarnacion and Angelo Valderama; and professor Octavio Dinampo, were kidnapped last June 8 by alleged members of the Abu Sayyaf in Kulasi town, Maimbung village. Drilon, Encarnacion, and Dinampo were release late Tuesday night. Valderama was freed June 12 after payment of “board and lodging fee.”

Dinampo is “not a suspect” and is undergoing debriefing in Zamboanga City, Razon said.

“This alias Mameng was supposed to be the guide that brought Ces Drilon and her group to that place in Indanan, where they would meet the group that they were supposed to interview,” the PNP chief said.

“But along the way, this alias Mameng disappeared, so that is one of the things that we are questioning, why he disappeared,” he said.

At a news conference upon her arrival in Manila on Wednesday afternoon, Drilon said she and her group were “betrayed.”

Razon said 14 Abu Sayyaf members were identified to have been involved in the kidnapping. A P500,000-bounty was put up for two of the 14 earlier this week.

Kidnap for ransom charges will be filed against Indanan town Mayor Alvarez Isnaji and his son, Haider, who negotiated with the kidnappers.

Razon said a parallel investigation was underway to determine if ransom was paid for the release of the ABS-CBN crew and Dinampo.

The PNP chief said authorities were looking into the alleged unloading of two duffel bags at the Zamboanga City airport on the eve of the release. Reports insinuated that the bags contained ransom money.

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Written by joelguinto

ThuUTC2008-06-19T08:18:14+00:00UTC06bUTCThu, 19 Jun 2008 08:18:14 +0000 22, 2006 at 12:45 am06

Posted in Uncategorized

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