SAN FERNANDO CITY, Pampanga—Police arrested a couple suspected as top leaders of the Communist Party (CPP) and linked to several murders, including the assassination of leaders of rival groups in the underground, a senior police official said on Wednesday.
Chief Supt. Raul Petrasanta, police regional director, said operatives nabbed Eugenia Magpantay-Topacio, 64, and her husband, Agaton Topacio, in a raid on a house in a remote barangay of San Antonio, Mexico.
“They did not resist the arresting officers,” Petrasanta said.
Magpantay-Topacio was identified as a member of the Central Committee of the CPP, head of the National Education Department and was former secretary of Central Luzon Regional Committee and Northern Luzon Commission. She was arrested in 1994 but was released on bail.
Topacio is head of the National Military Staff of the CPP and commander of the National Special Operations Group. The couple denied they were members of the underground movement.
Petrasanta said the couple faced various charges in Central Luzon, including kidnapping, murder and burning of 12 units of Victory buses in September 2011 in Capas, Tarlac.
He said they were the main suspects in the murder of Danilo Felipe in February 2001 in Barangay Narvacan Uno, Guimba and Jimmy Peralta in Bongabon in Nueva Ecija.
Agaton was linked to celebrated murders of underground personalities such as Romulo Kintanar, Felimon Lagman, Arturo Tabara and former congressman Rodolfo Aguinaldo of Cagayan, Petrasanta said.
He said the couple, who were arrested on the strength of warrants of arrest issued by Malolos Regional Trial Court, were being detained at the Regional Intelligence Division in Camp Olivas, Pampanga.
Relatives of the couple rushed to Camp Olivas and said the joint police and military team arrested the wrong persons, who they identified as Lourdes David Quioc, 64, and Reynaldo Canlas Ingal, 63, and they are not husband and wife but cousins.
Arnold David, 21, who claimed he was the youngest son of Quioc, said his mother is a known community “hilot” on call to help pregnant mothers and she also work as volunteer in their local church.
David presented Quioc’s senior citizen’s and voter’s identification card to prove her identity and appealed on officials to let her mother go home.
Ingal, according to his sister Angelina del Rosario, is a retired driver from the National Power Corporation in Morong, Bataan.
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