THE resistance offered by a determined Japanese tourist foiled an attempt of six suspected robbers to grab his bag while he waits for a ride at the country’s premier airport.
The unexpected resistance of the victim was later blamed by the suspects for their arrest.
Police identified the alleged robbers as Noimie Javier, Gerry Alegre, Estela Ramirez, Joy Vinto, Ben Santos, and Joseph Reyes. They were nabbed after a brief chase along MIA Road near the Ninoy Aquino International Airport Terminal 2 several minutes after they failed to grab the bag of of 54-year old Shinichi Tanigawa.
Airport Police Department (APD) chief Romeo Labador said the suspects failure to rob Tanigawa led them to return to the airport in search for another victim. He added that it was at this point that the suspects were arrested.
Labador narrated that before their arrest, the suspects were earlier seen acting suspiciously while on board a slow moving van cruising near the airport terminal’s arrival public area. He added that some of the suspects alighted from the vehicle and approached Tanigawa.
To distract the victim, Labador said, one of the suspects dropped two twenty peso bills beside the victim in the hope that he will be off guard while the rest of the group made a dash for his bag. To the surprise of the suspects, Tanigawa did not let go of his bag prompting the suspects to let go and head back for the van.
“I knew I was being shadowed by the group and when one of them grabbed my bag but I was already holding onto it tightly,” Labador said quoting Tanigawa.
Ten minutes later the van was again spotted again in the terminal 2 area. This time, however, the police are waiting for them. A brief chase then ensued when one of the lawmen tried to approach the van. Fortunately, the chase ended with the arrest of all suspects after their vehicle got stuck in traffic.
Manila International Airport Authority General Manager Ed Monreal said “We are not stopping with our efforts to rid NAIA of bad elements. This cleansing drive will be relentless.”
He added that the suspects, who are now detained at the Pasay City Jail, will be prosecuted.
In November last year, MIAA police were able to apprehend six members of Salisi Gang after months of surveillance. The gang members were found to be involved in various illegal acts like stealing cellphones, laptops, wallets and other important at the NAIA Terminal Areas.