Police killed seven members of a criminal syndicate operating in Central Luzon and nearby areas following two separate gun battles in Pampanga yesterday morning.
Chief Supt. Aaron Aquino, director of the Central Luzon regional police office, said the clash erupted when the suspects on board two vehicles evaded a checkpoint in Barangay Pulong Cacutod at around 10:30 a.m.
The initial shootout led to the killing of two suspects on board a Mitsubishi Montero.
“Those on board another vehicle sped off but were chanced upon by our operatives in Barangay San Jose in Magalang, Pampanga,” said Aquino.
Aquino said it was in Barangay San Jose where another shootout occurred between those on board a vehicle and the pursuing policemen from the local Highway Patrol Group and the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG).
Another five people died in the brief gunfight and Aquino said all of them remain unidentified as of press time yesterday.
“They are members of the Jimboy Santos Group which is based in Magalang,” said Aquino.
Based on the background check, Aquino said the syndicate is involved in carnapping, kidnapping, robbery holdup and highway robbery.
Police said the local police have subjected the group under surveillance and it was only yesterday morning that they chanced upon them as a group.
The slain suspects reportedly sped off after they were flagged down by the police in a checkpoint set up in Angeles City. (AARON B. RECUENCO)