RP arrests JI extremist in Mindanao
Quezon City (13 November) -- The capture of a suspected Jema'ah Islamiyah extremist may have averted attacks on mainly Catholic cities in Mindanao, police officials said Monday.
Blah Platon, a Filipino also known as Datu Demaatol Guilal, was caught at dawn on Monday at a security checkpoint outside Tacurong, one of five southern cities hit last month by blasts that killed seven people and wounded more than 30.
"We believed we foiled another bomb attack," said German Doria, police chief of the southern region of Mindanao, adding investigators were trying to determine the exact targets.
Willie Dangane, a senior police intelligence officer in Mindanao, said Platon was carrying a bag with materials to make improvised bombs, including blasting caps, electrical cord and a 105mm howitzer projectile.
"We also have standing warrants of arrest against Platon for his involvement in several bomb attacks and kidnap-for-ransom incidents in Tacurong and nearby areas," Dangane added.
Dangane said Platon had links with the country's largest Moro rebel group, the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), and was trained by an Indonesian bomb-maker, Jabide Abdul, also known as Bedz. (PIA) [top]