NDF consultant, companion arrested in Cavite raid

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DAVAO CITY (March 22) — Government operatives on Wednesday night arrested National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP) peace consultant and his companion in a raid in Gen. Bautista St., Poblacion II-A in Imus, Cavite.

Arrested were Renante Gamara, NDFP peace consultant for the National Capital Region and retired priest Arturo Joseph Balagat were presented in a press briefing in Southern Police District in Taguig City, Thursday.

Earlier today, the Philippine National Police (PNP) presented Gamara and Balagat before Assistant State Prosecutor Florencio dela Cruz for inquest.

Gamara is facing charges for violation of Republic Act 10915 or the Comprehensive Firearms and Ammunition Regulations Act of 2013 and RA 9516 or illegal possession of explosives and violation of the Omnibus Election Code which will be filed before the Department of Justice.

The respondents waived their rights to a preliminary investigation.

Last Thursday, the PNP National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) raided the house of Balagat in Brgy, Poblacion 2, Imus, Cavite after receiving reports of the priest keeping weapons and harboring individuals.

Recovered during the raid were a cal. 9mm pistol with magazine, two hand grenades, several electronic devices and gadgets containing subversive information, several subversive documents and cash amounting to PHP90,000.

National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) head, Maj. Gen. Guillermo Eleazar said, the arrest of Gamara was by virtue of search warrants implemented by the police and military authorities.

The Regional Special Operations Unit of the NCRPO, Philippine Army and intelligence agents brought Gamara and Balagat to Camp General Pantaleon Garcia in Imus, Cavite.

Gamara is a member of the central committee of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP)-New People’s Army (NPA), authorities said.

Balagat, on the other hand, will remain under custody of NCRPO for further investigation.

In 2012, Gamara was arrested in connection with the death of Pfc. Eriberto Eclavea in Mauban, Quezon and the murder attempt on a rebel returnee.

He was among the 21 NDF consultants who were temporarily released to take part in the peace talks between the government and communist leaders in Oslo, Norway in 2016.

Eleazar said Gamara went into hiding after President Rodrigo Duterte terminated the peace talks on Nov. 23, 2017 and subsequently ordered that they be rearrested.

Gamara’s arrest brings to four the number of NDFP peace consultants behind bars.-NewsLine.ph with PNA report

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