Less than a week after a carnap syndicate had stolen another vehicle, police operatives pounced on the hideout of the group operating in Mindanao, leading to the arrest of four gang members and the recovery of at least 12 stolen cars.
Philippine National Police Chief Director General Nicanor Bartolome directed all regional police commanders in Mindanao and the Visayas to sustain the momentum against carnap syndicates following the recent breakthrough against the notorious Baktin gang, which, police claimed, had links to the Dominguez group operating in Luzon.
In his report to Bartolome, Chief Supt. Arrazad Subong said that follow-up operations were launched against one Ryan Yu, tagged as the elusive leader of the Baktin carnapping syndicate who, along with four others, was charged in court for alleged involvement in a carjacking incident in Tandag City.
Last October 16, Yu’s group stole a Toyota Innova (LHB-816) owned by agro-industrial company Sumifro in Mabua, Tandag City. Through an SMS relayed to the PNP Complaints Center based in Camp Crame, police authorities in Surigao were immediately mobilized to track down the suspects with the stolen vehicle. Sumifro security officers told police authorities that the carnappers used a Hyundai Tucson (KFP-842) as back-up vehicle and that they positively identified one of the suspects as "Ryan Yu."
Later that day, Highway Patrol Group operatives spotted the stolen Innova in Barangay Lungsod in Tandag City, with a new license plate (KET-883) and driven by Hermie Talabe.
The arrest of Talabe led to the safehouse of Yu in Barangay Obreo in Davao City, where the group’s Tucson back-up vehicle was also found. Also recovered at the warehouse were a Toyota Hiace Grandia (KDP-869), a Honda Fit (MFH-580), and a Kia Carens without license plates. Arrested during the police operation were Jerry Malacao Paulino, Diego Lingasa Macatimbag, and Eddie Tabanao Lopez--all residents of Davao City.
Another follow-up operation resulted in the recovery of a Ford Ranger (TAI-674), a Mitsubishi Montero (LGL-133), a Toyota SUV (KEC-234), a Honda Jazz (KDS-302), an Isuzu D-Max (YBD-588), a Toyota Hilux (LFW-618), a Mitsubishi Lancer (KFE-882), and another Toyota Hilux (XHY-871).