At least eleven persons have been arrested for violating the ban on firearms being implemented for the upcoming elections, police reported.
The arrests were made in different parts of the country since 12 a.m. Sunday, when the election period officially began and checkpoints enforcing the ban were simultaneously launched.
Among the first to be arrested was one Joem Oliva, a 38-year-old man who suddenly deposited his caliber-.45 pistol at the counter of a videoke bar in San Jacinto, Masbate, around 12:15 a.m. Sunday, upon noticing lawmen at a nearby checkpoint.
The bar owner reported the incident to the lawmen and they asked Oliva for documents for the gun, but he failed to present any, according to the Bicol regional police.
Minutes later, around 12:50 a.m., one Wendell Datoy, 39, was arrested for carrying a caliber-.45 pistol, at a checkpoint along the National Highway in Imelda, Zamboanga Sibugay.
Two teens aged 18 and 17 were apprehended in Ipil, also in Zamboanga Sibugay, around 4:15 a.m. when they were found carrying a pistol replica as their motorcycle passed through a checkpoint.
In Metro Manila, the first reported arrest occurred around 1 a.m.
Police manning a checkpoint along C4 Road in Brgy. Bagumbayan North, Navotas City, were accosting 39-year-old Jerwin Gubaton for riding a tricycle without a face mask, but a caliber-.38 revolver suddenly fell from his short pants when he alighted.
Around 2:20 a.m., motorcycle rider John Paul Dunlao, 23, was stopped in Brgy. 179, Caloocan City, originally for not wearing a crash helmet but, as he was reaching for the motorcycle papers in belt bag, police saw in plain view a caliber-.38 revolver.
Hours later, around 4 p.m., 24-year-old Felix Dacula was arrested after being caught with a loaded caliber-.38 pistol at a fruit stand in Purok 4, Silverio Compound, Brgy. San Isidro, Parañaque City.
A resident earlier reported the presence of Dacula, who was allegedly involved in robbery/hold-up incidents in Silverio Compound, police said.
In Antipolo City, Rizal, one Jonathan David was arrested after being caught with a caliber-.38 revolver, some rounds of ammunition, and 2.2 grams of suspected shabu in Brgy. San Roque, around 2:27 a.m.
In Kabankalan City, Negros Occidental, a certain Christopher Gaisen, 21, was arrested around 10:25 p.m. Sunday, when lawmen inspecting the tricycle he was on saw a caliber-.38 revolver protruding from his unzipped sling bag.
Gaisen was also reportedly found in possession of two bladed weapons, which authorities also prohibit people from carrying during the election period.
In Eastern Visayas, one Raul Sinambong, 46, of Isabel, Leyte, and Wilmar Cabangonay, 21, of Taft, Eastern Samar, were arrested at checkpoints on the first day of the ban’s implementation.
Lawmen confiscated a homemade caliber-.357 revolver loaded with six rounds of caliber-5.56 ammunition and seven extra bullets from Sinambong, while a caliber-.22 rifle was seized from Cabangonay.