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Government Forces Capture Notorious NPA Terrorist Leader in Albay

CAMP ELIAS ANGELES, Pili, Camarines Sur - Combined elements of the 901st Brigade and Albay police arrested a ranking NPA terrorist leader in Albay in the evening of August 20, Friday, a military official said.

Brigadier General Marlou Salazar, Commander of the 901st Brigade, said that a crack team from his unit, supported by policemen from Albay, collared Alvin Orpiada a.k.a. Bong, the commander of Sentro De Grabidad, KSPN77 of the communist terrorist movement at around 9:45pm in Libas village of Guinobatan town.Orpiada has a string of criminal cases and at least 4 warrants of arrest were issued against him. He was facing 2 murder cases in a local court in Guinobatan town and a P500,000.00 bounty was placed on his head.

Salazar said that a local 'sari-sari' store owner complained about Orpiada's demand to take cases of beer without paying for them.

NPA leader's name had earlier surfaced in numerous reports of extortions on small-time businesses.

"Orpiada was heavily drunk when arrested by soldiers and policemen in the presence of his friends who shared a drink with him in a secluded house in the village. My soldiers followed all the legal procedures in effecting the arrest and the suspect was treated humanely," said Salazar.

As part of military procedure, Orpiada was brought to the military camp in Daraga town for custodial debriefing. Close coordination with the PNP had been made for the safe transfer of Orpiada to the PNP's custody.

Due to the cooperation of the local populace, the military has reported the increasing number of rebels being arrested in the past weeks.

About 3 weeks ago, two rebels were also captured with 4 firearms in an upland village in Lupi, Camarines Sur when a local tipster pointed to their exact location.

One of the captured rebels cooperated with the soldiers by helping unearth 8 high-powered firearms that they buried for safekeeping.

Major General Ruperto Pabustan, Commander of the 9th Infantry Division, has commended the soldiers in Albay for their relentless efforts to crush the communist insurgency.