Suspected robber killed in Caloocan grenade blast

Posted at Jan 31 2013 12:35 PM | Updated as of Jan 31 2013 08:35 PM

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MANILA - A suspected member of the notorious Alferez robbery group was killed in Caloocan City Wednesday evening.

Police responded to a grenade-throwing incident in Deparo, Caloocan and found the body of a certain Ed Villanueva.

It was not yet established how the grenade exploded. Police said the explosion may have been triggered by a squabble among the suspects or perpetrated by another group.

Witnesses said after the explosion, Villanueva's three alleged cohorts, only identified as Antonio Salvador, JM and Panoy, fled the scene after seizing an AUV driven by Melecio Reonal.

An inspection of the group's alleged hideout yielded several high-powered firearms and explosives. Military uniforms were also discovered.

Supt. Carlito Dimalanta said the Alferez group was behind the robbery incidents in malls in Metro Manila.

Villanueva also appeared on the rogues gallery of the police, confirming his links to the notorious robbery group.

Two other apartment tenants, a female only named "Nancy" and her 2-year-old child, are now under police custody.

Nancy said she served as a caregiver to one of the suspects who fled. She said the suspect was cancer-stricken.

She said they transferred to the apartment last month.

- Umagang Kay Ganda, 31 January 2013