Tuesday, April 18, 2023

Joint Philippine-Malaysian forces arrest most wanted top NPA leader of Southeastern Mindanao

NSFA, Panacan, Davao City - A joint law enforcement operation launched by the Philippine and Malaysian governments led to the arrest of Eric Jun B. Casilao alias Elian/Wally, Secretary of Southern Mindanao Regional Committee (SMRC) and Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) Central Committee member, at the Jeti Point International Clearance Gate, Langkawi, Malaysia on April 1.

Casilao is considered the most wanted Communist Terrorist Group (CTG) leader in Southeastern Mindanao, notorious for staging numerous atrocities in the Davao Region and other neighboring regions under the SMRC. He also has existing arrest warrants for Murder, Kidnapping and Serious Illegal Detention, and Attempted Murder.

He was boarding a ferry bound for Koh Lipe, Thailand, when joint law enforcers from the Armed Forces of the Philippines, Philippine National Police (PNP), National Intelligence Coordinating Agency, Bureau of Immigration, Department of Foreign Affairs, Royal Malaysian Police, and Malaysian Immigration arrested him.

Before his arrest, Casilao was put on the Malaysian Red Notice List through the request of the PNP for falsification of his passport by assuming a fake identity.

He was temporarily detained in Malaysia for immigration laws violation and subsequently deported to the Philippines on April 17 to face the charges against him.

Last year, the Eastern Mindanao Command (EastMinCom) through the 10th Infantry Division (10ID) released a wanted poster of Casilao to fast-track his arrest through the support of civilians.

LtGen. Greg T. Almerol, the Commander of EastMinCom, said that this prompted Casilao to abandon his comrades for fear of being identified by the community that shall eventually lead to his arrest, and the series of defeats his group has experienced due to the relentless focus military operations launched by EastMinCom units.

meanwhile, LtGen. Almerol lauded the 10ID, PNP, intelligence units, and other law enforcement agencies with the support of the Royal Malaysian Police for their efforts that led to the arrest of Eric Casilao.

"The arrest of Casilao proves that the Philippine government is determined to run after those who violated our laws wherever they hide. To the remaining CTG leaders, let this be a stern warning that 'no stones will be left unturned' even if they hide outside the country," the EastMinCom Commander said.#

Source: Public Information Office, Eastern Mindanao Command, AFP

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