Monday, October 31, 2011

Police says 2 suspects in Revilla slay arrested


MANILA (Mindanao Examiner / Oct. 31, 2011) – Police said it arrested two alleged suspects in the murder of Filipino heart rob Ram Revilla, three days after he and his girlfriend were attacked inside the actor’s two-storey house in Parañaque City.

Police said the two men were hired killers and that authorities are tracking down three more suspects, but officials would not give details of the operation or anything about the assailants.

Two masked gunmen barged into the house of Revilla, 22, late Friday and shot him and girlfriend Janelle Manahan. The young Revilla is the son on former politician Ramon Revilla, Sr. and Genelyn Magsaysay. He also starred in several movies.

Revilla, whose elder brother Ramon Revilla, Jr. is also a Filipino senator, was active in humanitarian mission in his hometown in Cavite.

The motive of the attacks was still unknown, but police said it could be a crime of passion. Revilla’s family offered P500,000 for any information that could lead to the arrest of the killers. (Mindanao Examiner)

Sunday, October 30, 2011

No leads yet on murder of son of influential Filipino politician

An undated photo of Ram Revilla and his father, Ramon Revilla, Sr. in his Facebook page.


MANILA (Mindanao Examiner / Oct. 30, 2011) – Police said it investigating the killing of a son of popular movie action star and former senator who was murdered inside his two-storey house in Parañaque City.

Police said gunmen barged into the house of Ram Revilla, 22, late Friday and shot him and his girlfriend Janelle Manahan. The young Revilla is the son on former politician Ramon Revilla, Sr. and Genelyn Magsaysay. He also starred in several movies.

Revilla, whose elder brother Ramon Revilla, Jr. is also a Filipino senator, was active in humanitarian mission in his hometown in Cavite.

The motive of the attacks was still unknown, but police said it could be a crime of passion. Revilla’s family offered P500,000 for any information that could lead to the arrest of the killers.

Police said two gunmen wearing Halloween masks entered the house and attacked the duo with guns and knives. (Mindanao Examiner)

Iligan’s most wanted man killed in clash



The bodies of Bocari Alindo, a notorious criminal gang leader; and his follower in hospital after a clash with policemen in Iligan City in the southern Philippines. (Photo by Merlyn Manos)


ILIGAN CITY (Mindanao Examiner / Oct. 30, 2011) – Policemen killed two notorious criminals in running gun battle in the southern Philippine city of Iligan, officials said Sunday.

Officials said one of the slain gunmen was considered Iligan’s most wanted criminal who was facing a string of murder charges. The other remains unidentified, but police the killing of Bocari Alindo have brought a sigh of relief to many residents in the city.

Policemen were serving an arrest warrant to Alindo in the village of Mandulong after they tracked him down in his hideout. But instead of surrendering, Alindo and his group opened fire on the officers and a gun battle ensued. Two of the gunmen were killed and it was unknown how many were able to escape.

There were no reports of casualties on the side of the police and officials said they had recovered revolvers from the slain criminals. (Merlyn Manos)

Military bombs Sayyaf-JI targets in Southern Philippines, kills 3

A map by Google Earth of the Karawan complex in Sulu's Indanan town in the southern Philippines shows thick coconut trees covering the ground where security forces shelled a hideout of Abu Sayyaf and Jemaah Islamiya militant on Sunday, October 30, 2011. Three militants were killed in the air strike by air force planes, officials say. (Text: Mindanao Examiner)

An undated US government photo of Jemaah Islamiya terror leader Zulkifli bin Hir.


ZAMBOANGA CITY (Mindanao Examiner / Oct. 30, 2011) – Philippine military planes bombed Sunday a mountain top stronghold of Abu Sayyaf and Jemaah Islamiya militants in the southern province of Sulu as security forces mounted fresh offensive against the two terror groups blamed for the spate of kidnappings and bombings in Mindanao, officials said.

Officials said three militants were killed in the fighting in Karawan in Indanan town and that troops recovered weapons and the bodies of suspected Abu Sayyaf militants.

“There is an ongoing government operation aimed at capturing high-value targets – Abu Sayyaf leader Doc Abu and several JI terrorists, among them Marwan and Mauiya,” Chief Inspector Amil Baanan, the operations chief of the provincial police force, told the Mindanao Examiner.

He said police forces have put up checkpoints and additional patrol in Sulu to ensure the safety of civilians from possible retaliation of the Abu Sayyaf.

Army Lieutenant Colonel Randolph Cabangbang, a spokesman for the Western Mindanao Command, said the operation began on Saturday and continued the next day with air force OV-10 bombers providing air support to ground assault.

“The operation against the terrorists is going on,” he said in a separate interview, adding the area is a known hideout of the Abu Sayyaf.

Doc Abu, whose real name is Umbra Jumdail, and Malaysian Jemaah Islamiya militant Marwan, or Zulkifli bin Hir, and Indian terrorist Mauiya, are on top of the military’s order of battle and are wanted by the US government on terrorism charges.

There was no immediate report if any of the three men were killed or wounded in the fighting.

The trio was also tagged as behind the 2009 kidnappings of three international aid workers Swiss national Andreas Notter, Italian Eugenio Vagni and Filipino Mary Jean Lacaba in Sulu.

Washington said Zulkifli bin Hir, an engineer trained in the United States, is believed to be the head of the Kumpulun Mujahidin Malaysia terrorist organization and a member of Jemaah Islamiya’s central command. His younger brother, Taufik bin Abdul Halim, was involved in the 2001 Atrium Mall bombing in Jakarta, in which he lost his own leg and was subsequently convicted.

He was reported to have fled to the Philippines in August 2003 and since then is believed to have conducted bomb-making training for the Abu Sayyaf. The US offered $5 million for his capture. (Mindanao Examiner)

3 Koreans missing in southern Philippines


ILIGAN CITY (Mindanao Examiner / Oct. 30, 2011) – Three South Korean nationals were reported missing after failing to return to their hotel from a trip to Lanao province in the southern Philippines.

The trio - Woo Shu Bong, Kim Nam Dou and Choi – were billeted at a hotel in Cagayan de Oro City in Misamis Oriental and have failed to return, police said.

Radio reports also quoted Senior Superintendent Gerry Rosales, the city police chief, as saying the foreigners went to Lanao to inspect a mining site. It was unknown whether the three men had a Filipino guide, of if they were lost or abducted.

Moro rebels and bandits are actively operation in Lanao. “We have no official reports the missing Koreans,” said Army Colonel Daniel Lucero, commander of the 103rd Infantry Brigade.

The 4th Infantry Division in Misamis Oriental province also said that it has no official reports about the missing foreigners. “We heard about on the radio, but officially there is no report about the missing Koreans,” said Army Major Eugenio Osias, its spokesman.

In March 2008, Moro rebels kidnapped a South Korean businessman Tae Jung and his Filipino companion Victor Macasieras in Lanao del Sur province and freed them two months later in exchange for huge ransoms. The two men, who were into mining, were buying chromites near Kapai town when gunmen seized them.

A South Korean treasure hunter Yoon Jae-keon was also kidnapped in February 2002 in Sarangani province near Lanao and freed four months later after his family paid an undetermined amount of ransom.

And in 1993, eight Korean engineers working on a construction site were also kidnapped for ransom by rebels in North Cotabato province, and freed unharmed after a series of government negotiations.

Foreigners have been targeted by rebels and criminal gangs for ransoms in the southern Philippines over the past decades and in some cases killed either for political reason or if their family failed to buy their freedom. (Mindanao Examiner)

Friday, October 28, 2011

Plagiarized Philippine news report lands on CNN

Screen grab of the CNN report.

ZAMBOANGA CITY (Mindanao Examiner / Oct. 28, 2011) – The Mindanao Examiner has complained to the US cable news channel CNN (Cable News Network) about a plagiarized news report filed by its Filipino correspondent.


In an e-mail sent to CNN, the Mindanao Examiner which runs a regional newspaper and operates a local cable television channel, said a report on a recent bomb explosion October 26 in Zamboanga City filed by Arlene Samson-Espiritu was lifted from its website – mindanaoexaminer.com – and passed the news to CNN as her own.

“I came across the CNN news from my Google alerts of the words "Southern Philippines" and "Mindanao" and was shocked to see the article submitted by your Filipino correspondent. Even the quotes of security officials made to the Mindanao Examiner were altered to make it appear that it was a CNN interview. And so was our little error ("") and every single comma (,) and periods (.).”

“I did not expect this to happen, especially from people working for a prestigious international television news network,” said Al Jacinto, the Mindanao Examiner Chief Editor.

There were no immediate statements from either CNN or Espiritu. But a copy of the complaint was also posted on CNN Facebook fan page.

The Mindanao Examiner also furnished CNN a copy of its own reports and the news filed by Espiritu.

1 dead, 5 hurt in Philippine blast
By Arlene Samson-Espiritu, For CNN
October 26, 2011 -- Updated 1810 GMT (0210 HKT)

Link: http://edition.cnn.com/2011/10/26/world/asia/philippines-blasts/?is_LR=1

STORY HIGHLIGHTS

Police say the fatality was a civilian who tinkered with one of the three bombs
Two other devices were detonated by police

Zamboanga City, Philippines (CNN) -- One person was killed and at least five others wounded in a bomb blast late Wednesday while two more improvised explosives were detonated in a village near the southern Philippine port city of Zamboanga, officials said.

Senior Superintendent Edwin de Ocampo, chief of the local police force, said two bombs planted at a lottery outlet and at another site about 100 meters away were discovered.

Police were in the process of detonating two of the bombs when the third device went off hitting a roadside eatery in the village of Sangali at around 9:15 p.m., about 30 kilometers east of downtown Zamboanga.

De Ocampo said the three improvised explosives were planted almost 100 meters apart from each other. He said the fatality, a civilian, was killed when he tinkered with the third improvised bomb as policemen were detonating the two other explosives.

"The civilian was killed on the spot by the powerful blast," he said.

Police had initially said two people had died in the blast but later revised the total to one dead.

One police bomb expert said the bombs were assembled from ammonium nitrate-fuel oil and packed with concrete, nails and detonator. The deadly chemical mixture is used primarily in mining and quarrying operations.

The military said it deployed troops to secure civilians in the area. It said no group or individual claimed responsibility for the attack. ""We still don't know the motive or who was behind it," Army Lt. Col. Randolph Cabangbang, a spokesman for the Western Mindanao Command, told CNN.

On Oct. 9, 10 people were injured when two separate explosions took place as the city was preparing for the feast of Our Lady of Pilar.

Mindanao Examiner Story. (UPDATED)
Link: http://mindanaoexaminer.com/news.php?news_id=20111027222348

ZAMBOANGA CITY (Mindanao Examiner / Oct. 26, 2011) – One person was killed in a bomb blast late Wednesday and two more improvised explosives were detonated by the police on a village in the southern Philippine port city of Zamboanga, officials said.

Officials said eight more civilians were wounded in the explosion at a roadside eatery in the village of Sangali, about 30 kilometers east of downtown Zamboanga.

Two more bombs planted at a lottery outlet and at another site about 100 meters away were detonated, said Senior Superintendent Edwin de Ocampo, chief of the local police force.

De Ocampo said three improvised explosives were planted almost 100 meters apart from each other. He said a civilian was killed after he tinkered with one improvised bomb as policemen were detonating two other explosives.

“The civilian was killed on the spot by the powerful blast,” he said.

One police bomb expert said the bombs were assembled from ammonium nitrate-fuel oil and packed with concrete nails and detonator. The deadly chemical mixture is used primarily in mining and quarrying operations.

The military said it deployed troops to secure civilians in the area. It said no group or individual claimed responsibility for the attack. “We still don’t know the motive or who was behind it,” Army Lt. Col. Randolph Cabangbang, a spokesman for the Western Mindanao Command, told the Mindanao Examiner.

The blast occurred a day after patrolling troops clashed with suspected Abu Sayyaf militants at sea late Tuesday off the village of Taluksangay in Zamboanga City.

One soldier was killed and three others wounded after four heavily-armed men on motorboat attacked them.

Officials said the attack on the soldiers was in retaliation to the killing of Abu Sayyaf sub-leader Imran Asgari in a firefight with the military last month in Sacol Island.

Asgari was also linked by the military to the spate of kidnappings in Zamboanga Peninsula. (Mindanao Examiner)

Original Story. (Breaking Report)
Link: http://mindanaoexaminer.com/news.php?news_id=20111026104308

ZAMBOANGA CITY (Mindanao Examiner / Oct. 26, 2011) – One person was killed and at least 5 others wounded in a bomb blast late Wednesday and two more improvised explosives were detonated by the police on a village in the southern Philippine port city of Zamboanga, officials said.

Officials said five more civilians were wounded in the explosion at a roadside eatery in the village of Sangali, about 30 kilometers east of downtown Zamboanga.

Two more bombs planted at a lottery outlet and at another site about 100 meters away were detonated, said Senior Superintendent Edwin de Ocampo, chief of the local police force.

De Ocampo said three improvised explosives were planted almost 100 meters apart from each other. He said a civilian was killed after he tinkered with one improvised bomb as policemen were detonating two other explosives.

“The civilian was killed on the spot by the powerful blast,” he said.

One police bomb expert said the bombs were assembled from ammonium nitrate-fuel oil and packed with concrete nails and detonator. The deadly chemical mixture is used primarily in mining and quarrying operations.

The military said it deployed troops to secure civilians in the area. It said no group or individual claimed responsibility for the attack. “”We still don’t know the motive or who was behind it,” said Army Lt. Col. Randolph Cabangbang, a spokesman for the Western Mindanao Command.

The blast occurred a day after patrolling troops clashed with suspected Abu Sayyaf militants at sea late Tuesday off the village of Taluksangay in Zamboanga City.

One soldier was killed and three others wounded after four heavily-armed men on motorboat attacked them.

Officials said the attack on the soldiers was in retaliation to the killing of Abu Sayyaf sub-leader Imran Asgari in a firefight with the military last month in Sacol Island.

Asgari was also linked by the military to the spate of kidnappings in Zamboanga Peninsula. (Mindanao Examiner)

Bomb explodes in Cotabato City

A passenger van slows down at an army checkpoint guarded by militias in the southern Philippines. (Mindanao Examiner Photo)


ZAMBOANGA CITY (Mindanao Examiner / Oct. 28, 2011) – An improvised bomb exploded on Friday and wounding a policeman in Cotabato City in the southern Philippines, officials said.


Officials said the bomb exploded in downtown Cotabato at around 9.25 a.m., but no individual or group claimed responsibility for the latest attack.

The bombing occurred two days after an improvised bomb went off in the village of Sangali in Zamboanga City and killed a civilian and wounding eight other people.

“We still have no report who was behind the bombing or the motive of the attack,” Army Colonel Noel dela Cruz, a spokesman for the 6th Infantry Division, told the Mindanao Examiner.

He said security forces are in red alert status because of the bombings in Zamboanga and the recent fighting between troops and rebels in western Mindanao.

The latest attack coincided with the visit of senior government officials to Zamboanga and Basilan to assess the security situation in those areas following the spate of bombings and series of fighting that left dozens of soldiers and Muslim rebels dead and wounded.

Peace and order

Interior Secretary Jesse Robredo arrived in Zamboanga City with Social Welfare Secretary Corazon Soliman and Presidential peace adviser Teresita Deles and visited the provinces of Basilan and Zamboanga Sibugay, scenes of the deadly clashes last week that forced some 20,000 people fleeing to safety.

The three officials also joined the provincial peace and order meeting in Basilan and met with representatives of different sectors on the aftermath of the fighting in the town of Al-Barka.

Robredo said the meeting intended to draw lessons from the incident to stabilize Basilan and bring development soon while at the same time push for the rule of law and pursue violators.

After the meting in Basilan, they also proceeded to Zamboanga Sibugay and held a similar conference with provincial and municipal officials, including the police and military, said Army Lieutenant Colonel Randolph Cabangbang, a spokesman for the Western Mindanao Command.

Presidential Deputy Spokesperson Abigail Valte said: “The government is extending P10 million in assistance to five affected municipalities in Zamboanga Sibugay for Cash for Work program to help displaced families.”
Victory

On Thursday, Army General Raymundo Ferrer, Western Mindanao military chief, said they have occupied a Muslim rebel base used as springboard for terror attacks and kidnappings-for-ransom in Zamboanga Sibugay’s Payao town after days of air strikes and ground assault.

He said the offensive was part of an operation to flush out rebels headed by Wanning Abdusalam, who was tagged as behind the spate of kidnappings and terrorism in the region. But there was no sign of Abdusalam or his group, although military commanders insisted that the rebel leader had been wounded in the fighting with security forces.

Cease-fire violations

Abdusalam, a leader of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front, which is currently negotiating peace with Manila, was disowned by his own group on Tuesday following deadly air strikes by military forces on a guerilla base on a remote Payao village called Labatan.

President Benigno Aquino ordered rejected calls to suspend the peace talks and pursue the rebels, and instead ordered security forces to go “all-out justice” for more than two dozen soldiers killed in the fighting.

The MILF protested the government attacks on its camps in Basilan and Zamboanga Sibugay and accused the military of violating a fragile truce. The rebel group maintains that government offensives were directed at the MILF’s Bangsamoro Islamic Armed Forces. (Mindanao Examiner)

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Globe Telecom, Zamboanga City issue public advisory after bomb blast





Police crime scene investigators collect evidence from a bombing site in Zamboanga City in the southern Philippines on Wednesday, October 26, 2011. One of three improvised explosives killed a civilian, Lodeto Ybañez, who inspected a baggage left at a roadside eatery in Sangali village, about 30 kms east of downtown Zamboanga. The blast left 8 others wounded. It was unknown who was behind the attack, but previous bombings had been largely blamed to the al-Qaeda-linked Abu Sayyaf group. (Mindanao Examiner Photo)


ZAMBOANGA CITY (Mindanao Examiner / Oct. 27, 2011) – A day after a bomb explosion killed a civilian in Zamboanga, Globe Telecom issued an advisory late Thursday urging citizens to report to authorities any suspicious or abandoned baggage in the southern Philippine port city.


The advisory, sent out to its subscribers in Zamboanga City, reads: “Inaabisuhan ni Mayor (Celso) Lobregat ang mga Zamboangeño na itawag sa 062117 ang anumang kahina-hinalang bagay na maaaring naglalaman ng bomba. Pinapayuhan ang lahat na maging alerto at mapagmasid.” (Mayor Lobregat is urging the Zamboangeño(s) to call 062117 for any suspicious baggage that could contain a bomb. Every body should stay alert and watchful.)


The telecommunication giant said the advisory was a public service by the Zamboanga City Government and Globe Telecom.


Abu Sayyaf terrorists had bombed Zamboanga many times in the past. But it was the first time in recent years that such an advisory was sent out by a private telecommunication company to warn the public to stay vigilant and alert.


One person was killed in a bomb blast late Wednesday and that 8 others were reported injured in Sangali village, about 30 kms east of here.


Officials said two more improvised explosives - all made from a lethal mixture of ammonium nitrate and fuel oil - were also detonated by the police in the village.


Just early this month, two bomb explosions ripped through a cockpit arena and a pension house in Zamboanga City and authorities blamed Abu Sayyaf militants, whose group has ties with al-Qaeda and Jemaah Islamiya, for the twin attacks. (Mindanao Examiner)

NGCP clarifies “red alert” status in Mindanao, explains load curtailment


ZAMBOANGA CITY (Mindanao Examiner / Oct. 27, 2011) - The National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP) on Thursday explained that the recent series of “red alerts” in the Mindanao grid is due to a generation deficiency caused by the scheduled maintenance of some power plants, and the unexpected shutdown or reduced capability of others.


It said the NGCP, as System Operator, issues Grid Operation Notices to grid users. “Red alert” refers to the system condition when the contingency reserve is zero or a generation deficiency exists, while a “Yellow alert” is a system condition where total of all reserves is less than 13.2% of the required capacity.


When system reserves are more than sufficient to meet the reserve requirements of the grid, the system is considered to be under normal condition. The system alert, and the corresponding power curtailment, if any, is lifted once demand recedes or once there is enough available capacity coming into the grid from the power plants.


It added that during periods of generation deficiency, NGCP implements the Mindanao grid-wide power load curtailment to maintain the power grid’s security and reliability.


“It is NGCP’s obligation under the law and its franchise to ensure that the grid operates at an optimum level with due consideration for safety, security and reliability,” Cynthia Alabanza, NGCP spokesperson said in a statement sent to the Mindanao Examiner.


“The level of curtailment is based on the Mindanao generation deficiency matrix issued to us by PSALM/NPC. NGCP does not, by itself, determine which franchise area or distribution utility gets what portion of the available supply. We only follow a matrix supplied to us by PSALM/ NPC,” she added.


PSALM is the acronym for Power Sector Assets and Liabilities Management, while NPC stands for National Power Corporation.


“Beginning October 19, NGCP implemented load curtailment based on PSALM/ NPC’s matrix when available reserve energy levels dropped to negative 12MW, and persisted until October 24 when reserves were at negative 45MW,” Alabanza said. “Grid conditions improved to a yellow alert status on October 25, the day one of the plants on scheduled maintenance went back online. Still, the reduced capability of other plants led to a situation where the available reserves were insufficient to meet the grid’s required contingency,” Alabanza said.


She said NGCP maintains that this situation is isolated, and it is expected that the supply situation will normalize once the plants on scheduled or emergency shutdowns are back and synchronized to the grid.

Business heir abducted in Dipolog City



ZAMBOANGA CITY (Mindanao Examiner / Oct. 27, 2011) – Unidentified gunmen seized Thursday the heir of a wealthy trader in Dipolog City in Zamboanga del Norte province in the southern Philippines, police said.


Police said the Oliver Lim, 32, was abducted on a highway by armed men who blocked his vehicle and forced him to another car.


The motive of the abduction is still unknown, but police said ransom could be one of them.


No individual or group claimed responsibility for the latest abduction. Kidnapping in Dipolog is not common and the city is one of the safest in western Mindanao. (Mindanao Examiner)

Philippine troops occupy MILF base in Zamboanga province

General Raymundo Ferrer. (Mindanao Examiner Photo)


ZAMBOANGA SIBUGAY (Mindanao Examiner / Oct. 27, 2011) – Philippine troops have occupied a Muslim rebel base in the southern province of Zamboanga Sibugay following days of intense fighting that killed and wounded dozens from both sides, officials told the Mindanao Examiner on Thursday.


Officials said soldiers have recovered an M60 machine gun left behind by rebels under Wanning Abdusalam, who was tagged as behind the spate of kidnappings and terrorism in Mindanao Island.


But there was no sign of Abdusalam or his group, although military commanders on Thursday insisted that the rebel leader had been wounded in the fighting with security forces.


General Raymundo Ferrer, commander of military forces in Mindanao, said they have destroyed Abdusalam’s base after inspecting the area on Thursday.


Soldiers were also searching for arms cache which was reported hidden by rebels in the town’s marshlands during their escape.


“We have occupied Waning Abdusalam’s fortified structures and our focus right now is clearing the area of unexploded mines and searching the mangrove where it is reported that they hastily dumped their firearms. Efforts are also being exerted to locate the wounded criminals who may have slipped the cordon during the night,” he said.


Abdusalam, a leader of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front, which is currently negotiating peace with Manila, was disowned by his own group on Tuesday following deadly air strikes by military forces on a guerilla base on a remote village called Labatan in Payao town.


Ferrer said army troops were combing the rebel base for mines and other explosives planted by rebels and that a grave site was discovered on Thursday where bodies of 15 rebels had been buried.


The military earlier said that two soldiers and six rebels were killed in the clashes and 40 MILF gunmen and four army troopers were also wounded in three days of fighting in the area.


There were no reports about Abdusalam but other security officials said he could still be in the town.


“We could not move freely (in the camp) since our EOD (Explosive Ordnance Disposal team) has to mark first the safe areas where we can pass through. The area is so defensible and lined with mines that you have to admire the ground troops for their steadfast determination to regain the territory from the lawless group.”


“The safe haven of kidnapping operations and terroristic activities in Zamboanga Sibugay has fallen. We have reestablish our authority in this part of Payao, and we owe it to the joint forces – our army, air force, navy and the police – who fought long and hard,” he said.


The MILF protested the government attacks on its camp and accused the military of violating a fragile truce. The rebel group maintains that government offensives in Payao town were directed at the MILF following air strikes by the military on the 113th Base Command of the Bangsamoro Islamic Armed Forces. The fighting forced thousands of villagers to flee their homes to safety for fear they would be caught up in the crossfire or held hostage.


The military also blamed the rebels for the spate of attacks in Zamboanga Sibugay last week that left 8 soldiers and policemen dead. And 19 soldiers were also slain by the MILF fighters in fierce battle recently in Basilan province after troops were sent on a test mission to a rebel stronghold in the town of Al-Barka to arrest a rebel leader Dan Asnawi who is accused as behind the series of kidnappings for ransom. (Mindanao Examiner)