A notorious leader of a private armed group and five of his cohorts were killed in a clash with police who intercepted them minutes after robbing traders along the national highway in Cagayan Valley Tuesday.
Cagayan regional police director Chief Supt Jose Mario Espino identified the slain gang leader as Gener Dunag, leader of the Gener Group and five of his unidentified henchmen involved in highway robbery and guns-for-hire operating in the region.
During the clash, one gang member managed to escape but was eventually arrested in a police dragnet in Brgy. Bangag in Lallo, the site of the bloody encounter.
Espino said that prior to the shootout, the Gener Group had just pulled off a series of highway robberies near Brgy. Bicud along Maharlika Highway among traders—three trucks hauling grains and lumber products —from whom they looted P296,000 cash, jewelry, and mobile phones.
As the robbery was progressing, a passer-by notified officials of Brgy. Logac in Lallo who reported the matter to the Allacapan and Lallo Police Stations.
Espino said one of the victims, a certain Ambot Rabago, was shot in the leg by the suspects before fleeing the scene.
Espino, quoting the victims’ account and identifying the vehicle used by the suspects, said responding policemen from the 203rd Company of the Regional Mobile Force Battalion set up a checkpoint in Brgy. Bangag where the armed group were heading.
The suspects were on board a white van bearing license plate RCK 364.
Espino said the suspects, instead of stopping, ignored policemen manning the checkpoint and fired several shots, prompting authorities to retaliate.
Police records showed the Gener Group was involved in the series of robbery incidents in Pamplona, Cagayan.
The latest victim of the group was Gloria Bautista, a businesswoman from Brgy. Capalilauan. She was robbed of P70,000 cash last Oct. 26.
The other victims were Ronnie Garcia from Nicolas Agatep, Lasam town, driver of rice trucking; Agustin Inay of Tuquitoc, Sanchez Mira, a coconut trader; and Ambot Rabago, driver of trailer truck loaded with rice and corn owned by Gregory Tallog.
Recovered from the suspects were one KG99 fully automatic machine pistol, three caliber 45 pistols, and a 9mm pistol.