Officers of the Philippine National Police – Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (PNP-CIDG) and the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) Intelligence Service were able to confiscate over 6,000 rounds of machine gun ammunitions and 4 M203 grenades on Thursday morning, October 13.
They are roughly valued to be at least PHP 372,000, and were stored in 9 cardboard boxes in a Philtranco bus from Pasay City.
The live ammos were intercepted through an entrapment operation by the authorities at the Integrated Bus Terminal in Agora, Barangay Lapasan, Cagayan De Oro City.
On top of the live ammunitions, the entrapment operation also led to the arrest of two men. They are 18-year old Amer Macarangal and 33-year old Jabar Mangadag, both natives of Lanao del Sur, but reside in Marawi City.
According to CIDG – Northern Mindanao Deputy Regional Chief Melgar Devaras, they initially received information about the ammunition transport from Pasay from the AFP.
The boxes of ammunition arrived and were stored at Philtranco’s packaging area at the Agora bus terminal on Wednesday. He said that they waited for the people who were set to claim the boxes before they commenced the entrapment operation.
The arrested suspects revealed that ammunitions were allegedly headed to a gun store in Marawi, and were mistakenly declared as auto parts.
Devaras disclosed that one of the arrested suspects, Mangadag, is affiliated with the Moro Islamic Liberation Front, while Macarangal is an employee at a gun store in Marawi.
Devaras also shared that be believes that the confiscated ammunitions would be used for criminal activities, considering that the area where the ammunitions were confiscated is the address of the Maute Group.
Meanwhile, Spokesperson Captain Joe Patrick Martinez of the Army’s 4th Infantry Division revealed that they would be making investigations as to the source of the ammunitions. He also shared that the types of ammunitions confiscated could only be manufactured from the government’s arsenal.