MATALAM, North Cotabato: A “high-value target” (HVT) drug suspect died after allegedly resisting arrest and engaging police agents in a shootout during a drug buy-bust operation here Sunday.
Cpl. Moiser Diocales, police investigator-on-case, identified the slain suspect as Guintawan Batulawan Salido, 40, of Barangay Kilada.
“Salido was listed as the topmost wanted drug personality of the Matalam police and ranked sixth in the priority target list of North Cotabato police provincial office,” Diocales said.
During an entrapment operation, police said the tricycle–driving suspect sensed that he was dealing with a poseur-buyer, pulled out a gun and opened fire at the undercover agent.
“The agent managed to duck the volley of bullets from the suspect and fired back, hitting the latter twice in the body,” Diocales said.
Police officers brought the suspect to the hospital but was declared dead on arrival by doctors, he added.
Salido yielded a .38-caliber revolver with several spent cartridges, a sachet of shabu worth PHP5,000, the marked money, and his tricycle, police said.
Diocales said the suspect had long been placed under surveillance by the police after he allegedly began expanding his illegal drug activities to the nearby towns of Datu Piang and Kabacan.
(John Andrew Tabugoc/PNA/SRNY/RSP)