Kid­napped Malaysian gecko trader freed in Sulu vil­lage


PHILIP­PINE Na­tional Po­lice (PNP) on Thurs­day con­firmed the re­lease of a Malaysian gecko trader who was ab­ducted by sus­pected Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) ban­dits in a re­mote vil­lage in Sulu more than a year ago.

PNP spokesman Chief Supt. Agrimero Cruz Jr., quot­ing re­ports from the field said that Mo­ham­mad Nasarud­din Bin Saidin was re­leased by his cap­tors last Satur­day.

The PNP spokesman said that Saidin was freed some­time in the af­ter­noon last Satur­day in the vicin­ity of Subah Timaho in Sulu prov­ince.

The re­lease of the for­eigner was con­firmed to the PNP by their Malaysian coun­ter­part, re­ports said.

Af­ter his re­lease, Saidin im­me­di­ately boarded a “jungkong” in go­ing to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia to be re­united with his fam­ily af­ter a year be­ing held cap­tive by ban­dits, re­ports said.

Saidin was snatched by armed men on May 8, 2011 while he was hunt­ing for gecko ( tuko) in the vicin­ity of Sitio Bootan, Brgy. Ka­ja­tian in In­danan, Sulu, a known baili­wick of ASG ban­dits.

The Malaysian is among the nu­mer­ous for­eign­ers be­ing held cap­tive by ASG in Sulu and the nearby is­land prov­ince of Basi­lan.

Among of the for­eign­ers still held cap­tive by the ban­dits is re­tired Aus­tralian army man, War­ren Richard Rod­well, who was snatched in Zam­boanga Sibugay De­cem­ber last year and was taken to Basi­lan.

Also in Fe­bru­ary this year, two Euro­peans were snatched by five gun­men, be­lieved to be mem­bers of the ASG in a re­mote vil­lage in a re­mote vil­lage in Pan­glima Su­gala town in Tawi-tawi prov­ince.

Two Euro­peans, Lorenzo Vin­ciguerra, 47, a Swiss and Ewold Horn, 52, a Dutch, were on a bird-watch­ing trip when ab­ducted and taken by their cap­tors to Sulu prov­ince.

Sulu Gov­er­nor Sakur Tan, left, and ARMM Gov­er­nor Mujiv Hataman, hud­dle in this photo posted on the web­site of Sulu Pro­vin­cial Gov­ern­ment.

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