PANDAG, Maguindanao - Combined elements of the 33rd Infantry (Makabayan) Battalion (33IB) and the 4th Special Action Battalion, Special Action Forces (SAF) arrested 5 persons allegedly involved in drug trafficking here.
The law enforcement operation was carried out at 7 a.m. Wednesday at Sitio Mamalinta, Kayaga Village in this town.
A certain Dante Dalaten, 34, and four of his cohorts were caught as authorities barged in a house and pointed their guns at them.
The troops seized 4 low-powered firearms, a hand grenade, and 26 grams of shabu with a street value amounting to P130,000.
Police Chief Inspector Vernido Villamor of the 43rd Special Action Company led the assault of the main drug den where the suspects were arrested.
1st Lt. Austin John Jamora, Commanding Officer of A/33IB, cornered Dalaten in an adjacent house.
"He was forced to surrender when I threatened to shoot his position. We ensured that his rights were respected," said Jamora.
The troops recently finished their close quarter battle training under the tutelage of SAF instructors prior to this operation.
Lt. Col. Harold M Cabunoc, the Commanding Officer of the 33rd Infantry Battalion, supervised the conduct of the law enforcement operation.
"We have set the standard on how to implement a successful operation without collateral damage. We have trained together with SAF troopers and I emphasized the need to maintain our credibility by respecting human rights and ROE [Rules of Engagement] provisions," said Cabunoc
The suspects were handed over to Pandag Police for inquest proceedings.