A retired Marine officer who operates a passenger boat was abducted Sunday by suspected Abu Sayyaf bandits in Pantukan Island in Barangay Panglima Tahil, Sulu, according to report released by Task Force ZAMBASULTA (Zamboanga, Basilan, Sulu, Tawi-Tawi).
The task force, a unit led by Naval Forces Western Mindanao commander Rear Admiral Yoma, identified the victim as Master Sergeant Renato Fernandez.
It said five armed men who posed as passengers of Fernandez’s M/L RJ Express seized him while aboard the water craft.
Fernandez’s wife, Embraida Usman Fernandez, confirmed to authorities that her husband had been abducted.
According to Embraida, the former Marine left Jolo pier aboard their own boat around 9:15 a.m. going to Pangutaran Island. The boat had around 40 passengers.
“At around 10:30 a.m., while sailing, three of his passengers took their hidden long firearms and immediately seized Fernandez,” the task force’s report said.
Two pump boats with a pair of armed men approached the boat and the abductors transferred with their victim. They sailed towards the area of Barangay Buton Mahablo, Parang, Sulu.