By AARON B. RECUENCO & NESTOR L. ABREMATEA
Police killed six men identified with Albuera town Mayor Rolando Espinosa Sr. in Leyte a day after his surrender to Director General Ronald dela Rosa at Camp Crame in Quezon City.
Chief Inspector Maria Delia Retuaya, spokesperson of the Eastern Visayas regional police, said the clash occurred inside the residence of the mayor in Barangay Binulho at around 5:30 a.m., Wednesday.
“Six armed men believed to be members of Espinosa group were killed in the operation,” Rentuaya said in a phone interview.
Rentuaya said the gunmen shot it out with the raiding teams from the local police and Regional Public Safety Battalion when the cops swooped down on Espinosa’s house.
Seized during the operation were 13 high-powered firearms, rifle grenades and a .45-pistol.
Espinosa yielded to dela Rosa on Tuesday for fear of his life after President Duterte’s “shoot-on-sight” order against him and his son Kerwin.
The mayor is being accused of being a drug protector, particularly of his son whom he admitted to be on an illegal drugs-dealing business.
Police said the slain suspects were men of Kerwin, believed to be Leyte’s top drug lord.
Kerwin was nowhere to be found as he left Leyte before the May 9 elections.
Kerwin has also been tagged as suspect in the road rage incident on July 30, 2014 in Barangay Caridad, Baybay City, that killed Visayas State University driver Restituto Soria.
Soria’s murder remains unsolved as students and other passengers of the VSU bus were afraid to testify on the gruesome incident.