Authorities captured nine suspected members of the terrorist Dawlah Islamiya-Maute Group but failed to arrest their leader during a raid in Lanao del Sur on Saturday, May 29.
Brigadier General Jose Maria Cuerpo, commander of the Army’s 103rd Infantry Brigade, said the suspects fired shots at soldiers and police officers while they were crossing a rice field, giving Faharudin Hadji Satar and some of his followers enough time to escape.
Satar, also known as Abu Bakar and Abu Zacaria, rose to become the leader of the Dawlah Islamiya-Maute Group after government troops killed its previous head Obwaydah Marohombsar aka Abu Dar in an encounter in Lanao del Sur on March 14, 2019.
Cuerpo said the 43-year-old Satar evaded arrest after receiving a tip about the impending raid. His followers then fired shots at the soldiers and police officers to buy him some time to escape.
“Somebody sent a text to Zacaria (Satar) that the soldiers and policemen were crossing the rice paddies on the way to the house where he was hiding,” Cuerpo said.
He said Satar was hiding in a small concrete house in Barangay Paigoay, Tubaran town, a farming community some 58 kilometers south of Marawi City.
Cuerpo identified those arrested as Camaroden Tindug, 52; Sabdullah Sarip, 36; Oter Macaungun, 35; Asnare Alisood, 20; Alisood Dima, 52;
Sowaib Abdullah, 18; Saaduden Adapun, 30; Zaenal Abdulatip, 33, and Aleem Salih Pitiilan, 45.
All the arrested suspects are residents of Barangay Paigoay, Tubaraan town, Lanao del Sur, the same place where Satar hails from.
Cuerpo said authorities found rifles, an improvised explosive device, and Dawla Islamiyah propaganda materials in the house where Satar hid.
Among those seized were two M16 rifles, three M16 magazines with live ammunition, a carbine, two caliber 45 pistols, two base radios, six portable radios, cellphones, a laptop, USBs, and a wallet with P1,900 in it.
Cuerpo said the joint military-police operation had been planned in order to arrest Satar and one of his aides, identified as Muna Kali aka Abu Dimam based on court warrants. – Rappler.com