Kidnap victim freed after paying ransom to Abu Sayyaf Group

RJ Rosalado, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Aug 24 2016 01:21 PM

ZAMBOANGA CITY - The Abu Sayyaf group released Tuesday one of its captives, who was abducted earlier this month in Zamboanga Sibugay.

Paya Police chief Jerry Labrador said Nora Romoc was released in Jolo, Sulu before noon.

Details on how Romoc was released in downtown Jolo remained scarce.

Labrador said Romoc was brought to a military camp in Zamboanga Sibugay after she was recovered by local authorities in Jolo.

Nora's sister-in-law Angelina Romoc admitted their family paid ransom to the bandits for the release. She, however, was not sure how much was given to the group.

She said, negotiations were still on going for the safe release of Nora's husband, Elmer, and their 8-year-old son, who were also abducted with Nora from their house in Barangay Kulisap, Payao town.

The Romocs were having their dinner when at least 7 armed men barged into their house and took them.

They were dragged towards a nearby river where two motorized pump boats were waiting.

Colonel Zacarias Batalla, the commanding officer of 44th Infantry Batallion, said they have been maintaining a no ransom policy for kidnapping cases. He, however, admitted families of some captives negotiate with the bandits.

Batalla said he has yet to talk personally with Nora, whom he said was deeply traumatized.

Batalla said, the Romoc family has been communicating with the kidnappers, pleading to lower the ransom demand.