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ZAMBOANGA CITY, Zamboanga del Sur — An Army scout ranger and two civilians were arrested for selling government-issued firearms in a buy-bust operation Sunday, November 14, in one of the local hotels here.
Major General Alfredo Rosario Jr., chief of the Western Mindanao Command, confirmed that one of their soldiers was among the three arrested inside La Terazza Hotel along Governor Camins Avenue.
Rosario identified the soldier as Corporal Alkhaizer Balboa, 36, of Barangay Sinunuc, this city.
Based on initial reports, Balboa was with Rodolfo Llenado Jr., 37, and Remar Hadjiri, 43, during the entrapment operation.
The three were caught in possession of several government-issued firearms and ammunition. A total of six high-powered weapons and assorted ammunition were recovered from them.
Confiscated by the operatives were two Colt M16 rifles, one M60 machine gun, one M653 rifle, one Colt MKIV cal. 45 with one inserted magazine assembly loaded with seven bullets, one Swissvale cal. 45 pistol, 14 boxes of cal. 5.56 live ammunition, one dusted brown envelope containing 800 P1,000.00 bills (buy-bust money), 74 cal. 45 empty shells, one ammunition case, one magazine assembly for cal. 45 loaded with six bullets, and one ammunition box.
Based on the report, a test buy operation was conducted on Nov. 2 which attested to the illegal activity of Corporal Balboa. His movements have been monitored since then until the follow-up operation last Sunday.
Rosario said these illegal acts of Balboa are not tolerated by the Armed Forces, hence, an impartial investigation is underway. He vowed to observe due process.
“If proven guilty, stiff penalties will be meted out to the soldier who committed the crime. Soldiers are the defenders of the people and the state, hence, anyone who violates the law has no place in the ranks of the Armed Forces,” Rosario said.
The three suspects are facing charges for violation of Republic Act 10591 or the Comprehensive Firearms and Ammunition Act.
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