Cop, 12 suspects die in 5-hour gun battle in Sultan Kudarat

A 5-hour gun battle ensued in Sultan Kudarat, Maguindanao when the subject of a number of warrants of arrest and his fully-armed followers engaged an arresting team of police officers in a firefight early morning.

Twelve suspects and a member of the arresting team from the PNP Special Action Force (SAF) died in the encounter.

According to the initial report of PBGEN Samuel P Rodriguez, Regional Director, PROBAR to PNP chief, Police General Debold M Sinas, a shootout erupted when a police team, which comprised of of element of CIDG-BAR, PNPSAF, Regional Intelligence Division of PRO-BAR, RMFB 14, Sultan Kudarat MPS and Phil. Marines MBLT2 was serving Warrants of Arrest against DATU PENDATUN TALUSAN, aka “PENS”, a former barangay chairman of Brgy Limbo, Sultan Kudarat, around 3:00 AM of January 23, General Sinas said.

“Police Staff Sergeant Elenel Pido unfortunately died during battle. I extend the deepest sympathy of the PNP to his orphaned family whom we assure of all the benefits and support,” Sinas said as he commended the arresting police troopers for their gallant efforts to overcome the onslaught of attack.

Four other SAF troopers were wounded in the encounter. They are, PCPT Ronillo R Daligdig Jr, Pat Cayl Jun E Gonzales, John-Ryan Aquino, and PCpl Gyvard Bando. They were evacuated to the Notre Dame Hospital in Cotabato City for treatment.

Talusan was the subject of arrest warrants for crimes of carnapping, robbery with homicide, and double frustrated murder; among others, issued by RTC 12 Branch 27, Cotabato City presided by Hon. Judge Kasan K Abdulrakman dated October 2, 2020. A Search Warrant for violation of R.A. 10591 (Illegal Possession of firearms and ammunition) was separately issued by Hon. Allan Edwin P. Boncavil, Acting Presiding Judge of RTC 12th Judicial Region Branch 19, Isulan, Sultan Kudarat dated January 18, 2021.

Two other slain followers of Talusan were identified as DATU ABDULLAH TALUSAN aka DATU BEDO and DATU BEMBI TALUSAN. CIDG Investigators and SOCO examiners are establishing the identities of nine other slain followers of Talusan.

Recovered from Talusan’s barricaded position were six M16 rifles, one M14 rifle, one FN-FAL rifle, an improvised Barret-type rifle and one cal. 22 rifle, and two cal. 45 pistols. PHILIPPINE NATIONAL POLICE