PNP official dies rescuing kidnap victim

Rambo Talabong
PNP official dies rescuing kidnap victim
Superintendent Arthur Masungsong is known in the PNP for successfully bringing home dozens of kidnap victims

MANILA, Philippines – He brought one last kidnap victim home.

Philippine National Police (PNP) Anti-Kidnapping Group (AKG) Luzon field unit chief Superintendent Arthur Masungsong died in a shootout with suspects leading to the rescue of 27-year-old Raziel Esguerra on Saturday, December 23.

According to a police report, Esguerra was kidnapped at around 3 am on Friday, December 22, with her captors demanding P15 million from her family as ransom.

Her brother reported the threat to the Camp Crame office of the PNP AKG, which called for the rescue team that Masungsong led.

Masungsong planned an entrapment operation, setting a meeting with the suspects in Balagtas, Bulacan, but the captors diverted the meetup to Angat, Bulacan instead. Angat is around 30 kilometers away from Balagtas. 

On their way, Masungsong’s group “chanced upon” the vehicle of the kidnappers, slowing down in their approach.

“The suspects noticed the AKG vehicle and suddenly fired upon them,” the police report read.

This led to a shootout which ended with 4 of the suspects dying, while Masungsong and another policeman Chief Inspector Ronaldo Lumactod were injured.

They were brought to a nearby hospital where Masungsong was declared dead.

Masungsong is a recognized operative of the PNP AKG, known for dozens of successful operations.

No less than PNP chief Director General Ronald dela Rosa paid his last respects at the St Ignatius Funeral parlor where Masungsong’s body was brought. The top cop also consoled Masungsong’s grieving family.

Masungsong was married and had 4 children. –

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Rambo Talabong

Rambo Talabong covers the House of Representatives and local governments for Rappler. Prior to this, he covered security and crime. He was named Jaime V. Ongpin Fellow in 2019 for his reporting on President Rodrigo Duterte’s war on drugs. In 2021, he was selected as a journalism fellow by the Fellowships at Auschwitz for the Study of Professional Ethics.