Four alleged members of the Al Qaeda-linked Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) were arrested at a government checkpoint in Patikul, Sulu, a military commander said.
Col. Allan Arrojado, head of Joint Task Group Sulu, said bomb components were also seized from the suspects whom he identified as Jumli S. Pulah, Hassan I. Jubakal, Ingki H. Abdula, and Basir Alih.
Arrojado said military and police teams were jointly manning a checkpoint at Barangay Bongkaong, Patikul town around 6:30 p.m. Thursday (Dec. 18) when they received information that the suspects were traveling along the main supply route Latih-Bungkaong on board a Mitsubishi Strada.
When the vehicle reached the checkpoint, it was intercepted by the government forces.
When searched, troops found inside the suspects’ van bomb components such as two 20-gallon containers of ammonium nitrate, blasting caps, batteries and wirings, one bottle with TNT, three hand grenade, and nylon wire.
Also recovered were a letter, three papers bearing mobile phone numbers, face mask, black bag, two pieces cellphone batteries, watch, coins, and a bottle of perfume.
The suspects were turned over to the police for further investigation.