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PIA Press Release
2006/09/02

Santiago city forms SWAT team to combat crime

SANTIAGO CITY, Isabela (2 September) -- The city government here recently formed its elite force of policemen to respond against the rising criminalities in the city.

The 35-member Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT) team was formed by the city government and the police regional office in Tuguegarao City due to the clamor of the business sector and community residents on the increasing tide of crime incidents.

The city government here also purchased P3 Million-worth of assorted firearms such as AK-47 assault rifles, sniper rifles and .45 Cal pistols for the 135 policemen in the city.

Mayor Amelita Navarro said the acquisition of the firearms was precipitated by rising incidents of robbery, illegal drug trade, kidnap-for-ransom and other forms of criminality.

The city police, she said had been ill-equipped to confront organized criminal groups operating in the city who, she said were better equipped in terms of firearms, communications and mobility.

She noted that out of the 135 policemen in the city, only 35 have issued firearms, most of these were already old and unreliable.

The mayor said "it is very lamentable to see many of our law enforcers, risking their lives implementing the law but without reliable firearms." (PIA-NVizcaya) [top]

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