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4 ‘kidnappers’ surrender in North Cotabato

ZAMBOANGA CITY, Philippines — Four alleged members of a kidnapping group have surrendered to authorities in North Cotabato, officals said yesterday.

The suspects were reportedly members of the Pentagon kidnap-for-ransom group, which was tagged in a series of high-profile kidnappings in Central Mindanao and Zamboanga peninsula two decades ago.

Among the group’s victims were five Chinese engineers working in an irrigation project in North Cotabato and Italian priest Giuseppe Pierantoni in Zamboanga del Sur in 2001.

The suspects turned over several firearms to the Army’s 90th Infantry Battalion based in M’lang town.

The “kidnappers” were presented to M’lang Mayor Russel Abonado and Brig. Gen. Donald Gumiran, commander of the Army’s Infantry Brigade, during a meeting at the municipal hall.

The relentless military operations against lawless groups reportedly compelled the suspects to surrender.