An Abu Sayyaf straggler arrested on Thursday in Bohol was shot dead by police as he was attempting to escape past 2 a.m. on Friday.
Senior Supt. Felipe Natividad, the Bohol police provincial director, said Saad Samad Kiram, also known as “Abu Saad,” was being transported by police escorts to Bohol District Jail in Barangay Cabawan, Tagbilaran City less than 24 hours after his capture.
Natividad said Kiram, 36, of Tulayan village in Luuk, Sulu, requested his escorts to allow him to answer the call of nature as they were in transit. The escorts removed his handcuff.
Kiram took the opportunity to escape, and a pursuit ensued.
Hours later, the police tracked Kiram’s location somewhere in Cortes town and rearrested him, but he allegedly tried to take the firearm of one of the arresting police officers.
The police officer shot Kiram in apparent self-defense, Bohol police said.
The Cortes police office said the bandit was brought to a hospital in the city, where he died shortly. Natividad told reporters during the Bohol governor’s weekly press conference that his office based in Camp Dagohoy would conduct an investigation into the escape attempt.
Kiram was arrested on Thursday in the village of Tanawan in Tubigon town after he asked a civilian for food and clothing.
Security forces are still scouring the hinterlands for two other bandits. A military officer said there could be two remaining stragglers left. One of them could have died of gun shot wounds during an encounter in Inabanga town last April 11.
Kiram was the target of a failed rescue operation by a police intelligence officer – Supt. Maria Cristina Nobleza – who was clandestinely working for the Abu Sayyaf.
Nobleza was eventually arrested along with a militant, Reneer Lou Dongon, who turned out to be her husband, and several others during a car chase in Tubigon.
Nobleza claimed she was working undercover to be able to penetrate the Abu Sayyaf.
CHR to probe
The Commission on Human Rights (CHR) on Friday sent investigators to Bohol to start a probe into the killing of Kiram.
The investigators will secure a copy of the official police report on Kiram’s death as part of an in-depth investigation.
CHR Central Visayas Director Arvin Odron said it was necessary to investigate Kiram’s death because he found the circumstances surrounding his killing highly questionable.
Odron said he would also ask the National Bureau of Investigation to conduct an autopsy on Kiram’s body. The autopsy will determine the trajectory of the bullets that hit Kiram, he said, to find out if he was shot at close range.