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Climaco asks PNP to review motives in hired gun attacks

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In her capacity as chairperson of the Regional Peace and Order Council (RPOC) in Zamboanga Peninsula, Mayor Beng Climaco has asked the Philippine National Police (PNP) to review the motives behind the spate of shooting incidents perpetrated by alleged guns for hire or hired killers in the region.

Climaco believed that in most cases guns for hire do not have the motives when they carry out the attacks, theirs is to shoot/kill the victim/s on orders of the people who hired or paid them to do the criminal acts. Thus, those who hired the killer/s are the ones having the motives against the victims.

She made this clear during the 3rd regular quarterly meeting of the RPOC last Wednesday, when the PNP Regional Office 9 reported a total of 239 shooting incidents in the region from January to August 2018, and the No.1 motive was gun for hire with 88 cases.

Other motives for shooting incidents were old grudge with 81 cases, 27 heated arguments, 20 conflicts of interest, 11 crime related, 4 in defense of self or others, 4 work related, 3 drug related, and 1 insurgency related.

“I think you have to review these motives because the solution of crime incidents, especially gun attacks, would largely depend on the motives. That is why, every time there is a shooting incident we always probe on the motive behind. I believe guns for hire cannot be the motive per se, it’s the people who hired them,” Climaco told the police.

The police further reported that this year’s 239 shooting incidents were lower by 33% compared to 282 of the same period last year.

By comparative unit, Zamboanga del Sur had the highest number of shooting incidents with 93 cases, followed by Zamboanga City with 60 cases, Zamboanga del Norte with 39, Zamboanga Sibugay with 34, and Isabela City with 13 cases.

The police likewise reported that they have neutralized 81 gun for hire groups—12 in 2016, 35 in 2017, and 34 in 2018. Of these figures, 52 were arrested and 27 were killed in operations.

Among those arrested were Arnel Pepito, a gun for hire leader, and 15 others on May 5, 2018 at Purok Sudlon and Purok Josefinal, all of Barangay Poblacion, Sitio Putting Bato, Barangay Tungawan, and New Carmen, all of Sominot, Zamboanga del Sur.-(Vic Larato)




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