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13 high-powered guns seized in Makati

MANILA, Philippines — Thirteen high-powered firearms were seized from a suspected illegal gun dealer in Makati City, police said on Saturday.

Operatives of the National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) and the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) arrested Juanito Tanghal, 56, who was caught transporting high-powered firearms at a gasoline station in Barangay Olympia on Thursday.

NCRPO chief Maj. Gen. Jose Melencio Nartatez Jr. said a thorough investigation is underway to determine if the suspect has ties to terrorist organizations or crime syndicates.

“With the volume of loose firearms confiscated, an ongoing investigation is being conducted to verify if those firearms were used in terroristic activities, gun for hire and other illegal activities,” Nartatez said.

Recovered from the suspect were several high-powered assault rifles, a grenade launcher, submachine guns, short-barreled rifles and pistols..

Police also confiscated several magazines and boxes of ammunition of various calibers.

Prior to Tanghal’s arrest, CIDG and NCRPO operatives conducted an entrapment operation in Angeles City, Pampanga last Nov. 14 that led to the arrest of Bryan Marcos for illegal possession of firearms.

Investigators found Marcos’s residential address along Makiling street in Makati City.

While awaiting a search warrant, police launched a 24-hour stakeout of Marcos’s residence and witnessed Tanghal loading sacks of firearms into a vehicle. Tanghal tried but failed to escape and was arrested.

Tanghal is facing charges of violating Republic Act 10591, the Comprehensive Law on Firearms and Ammunition and the election-related gun ban, which ends on Nov. 29.