MANILA—A man considered to be the top suspect linked to the kidnapping of Indian citizens in the country was arrested on Wednesday in Candoni town, Negros Occidental.
Police Col. Jonnel Estomo, director of Philippine National Police-Anti-Kidnapping Group (PNP-AKG), identified the suspect as Mandeep Singh, also known as "Deepy Sidhu" and "Commando."
Authorities alleged that Singh, who lives in Calamba, is a member of the "Goldy Group" known for kidnapping Indian nationals.
According to Estomo, the group is responsible for 6 kidnapping cases of Indians in Metro Manila and nearby provinces from 2008 to 2017.
According to PNP-AKG spokesperson Police Lt.Col. Elmer Cereno: “Meron silang mga listahan din, kung sino itong mga may kaya at mga gumaganda ang mga negosyo, 'yun ang mga target nila. May kababayan din na nagti-tip din silang mga kababayan nila at yon ang pina-project nilang kidnap victims.
“May hinuhuli pa tayong apat na mga kasamahan nito na itinuturo at hopefully within next week makuha natin. Kalalabas lang ng warrant of arrest kaya nag-launch tayo ng manhunt operation,” Cereno added.
Singh was in tears when interviewed and denied being part of the Goldy Group.
“Hindi ako kidnapper, buhay ko simple lang dito Pilipinas. Sila-sila 'yan gusto gulo. Hindi ako gusto gulo,” he said.
Singh will be facing charges of kidnapping for ransom and serious illegal detention.
A manhunt is underway for other members of the Goldy Group.