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Abu Sayyaf member turned drug peddler killed in Tawi-Tawi sting

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A former Abu Sayyaf member was killed when he tried to fight off authorities trying to arrest him in a drug bust in Sapa-Sapa, Tawi-Tawi, the military reported.

Suspect Riyadzkan Maulana alias “Tamyang” was shot when he pulled out a grenade, according to a report from the Armed Forces’ Western Mindanao Command.

Members of the Marine Battalion Landing Team-6 and Sapa-Sapa Police carried out the operation around 11 a.m. Thursday.

Lt. Gen. Corleto Vinluan Jr., Wesmincom chief, said Maulana was a former Abu Sayyaf member under Salip Murah Asgali and Majan Sahijuan alias “Apo Mike.”

Maulana first surrendered to police on February 20, 2019, but was monitored to have supported Abu Sayyaf members transiting Tawi-Tawi, and even backed the January 16, 2020 kidnapping in Lahad Datu, Sabah.

He escaped a military operation left four militants dead on January 19, 2020 and surrendered in April the same year, but continued with drug pushing, and was even involved in incidents of indiscriminate firing and intimidation, Vinluan said.

Lt. Col. Noel Calendatas, MBLT-6 commander, said Maulana died of bullet wounds to the head and chest during the buy-bust.

Operatives recovered a hand grenade, seven sachets of suspected shabu, drug paraphernalia, the buy-bust money, and a motorized boat at the scene.

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