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Cops arrest 2 vote buying suspects in Tagkawayan

Cunanan while being flagged down by policemen shortly before his arrest. (Photo by Gemi Formaran)

by Gemi Formaran

TAGKAWAYAN, Quezon - Joint police units conducting Oplan Sita separately arrested on Tuesday two suspected vote buyers for the May 13 polls at Bgy. Tabason, here.

Quezon police director Senior Supt. Ramil Montilla identified the arrested suspects as Fredelino Cunanan, 45, native of Apari, Cagayan and resident of said village and Darius Bonifacio, 47, native of Guinayangan, Quezon and resident of Bgy. Cabugwang, here.

Montilla said the arrests were carried out by joint elements of Tagkawayan police station under Senior Insp. Milo Tabernilla, Regional Mobile Force Battalion, 2nd Quezon Provincial Force Maneuver and Highway Patrol Group- Quezon.

Quoting Tabernilla, Montilla said Cunanan who was driving a Yamaha STX Motorcycle was flagged down for not wearing a helmet at around 5 p.m.

When asked for his driver’s license and registration, Montilla said Cunanan opened his body bag where 13 sample ballots stapled with a P500 bill each indicating the name of mayoralty candidate Roberto ‘Bomel’ de Vero and his partymates were seen by the lawmen.

He said the policemen also found two P200 bills and three identification cards.

Exactly two hours later, Montilla said the same incident happened as the cops flagged down Bonifacio who was driving a Mitsukoshi RCS 125 motorcycle.

He said Bonifacio’s body bag yielded similar sample ballots with a P500 bill attached in it, and an ID.

The suspects were placed under arrest and were charged with violations of Section 261 (a) of Omnibus Election Code of the Philippines.