The Quezon City Prosecutor’s Office on Thursday submitted for resolution the string of criminal cases filed against an Indonesian national allegedly affiliated with the Maute terrorist group, barely a day after he was caught trying to escape the war-torn Marawi City.
Muhammad Ilham Syahputra, 23, native of North Sumatra, Indonesia, underwent inquest proceedings for violation of Republic Act 134 (Rebellion), Republic Act 10591 (Comprehensive Firearms and Ammunition Regulatory Act), Republic Act 9516 (Explosive Act), and Republic Act 9851 (International Humanitarian Law).
According to a senior official of the Department of Justice (DOJ), Assistant State Prosecutor Ethel Rhea Suril conducted the proceedings based on the complaint filed by the Philippine National Police.
Syahputra was captured by members of the barangay (village) peacekeeping action team (BPAT) in Barangay Luksadatu on Wednesday morning after he was spotted swimming away across the Lanao Lake near the battle zone.
Authorities said Syahputra, who speaks fluent Tagalog, had claimed during interrogation that there were at least 39 Maute stragglers still within Marawi City.
Senior Supt. John Guyguyon, chief of the Lanao del Sur Police Provincial Office, said that the suspect was carrying a grenade when he was arrested.
He said that the suspect also admitted to being an IS militant who came to the Philippines in 2015, and even participated in various operations.
Foreign fighters were believed to have fought side-by-side with local terrorists in the past five months of fighting.
Combat operations in Marawi were officially terminated last week as Abu Sayyaf leader Isnilon Hapilon and rebel leader Omar Maute were killed by government troops. /jpv
Inquirer calls for support for the victims in Marawi City
Responding to appeals for help, the Philippine Daily Inquirer is extending its relief to victims of the attacks in Marawi City
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