The Iloilo City Police Office (ICPO) has alerted the public, particularly the business community, to be vigilant against organized crime groups to avoid the repeat of the Sarabia Pawnshop and Jewelry Store daylight robbery in downtown Iloilo in mid January this year, where a group of armed suspects took away an estimated P4-million worth of assorted jewelries.
ICPO Director S/Supt. Ruperto Floro raised the alarm for the possible spill-over in Iloilo City of the Ozamis-Dipolog-Parohinog Group's members, who victimized the F&C pawnshop in Bacolod City in broad daylight heist early Saturday morning.
Floro urged the public to immediately report to the nearest police station presence of suspicious looking persons in their localities so that the police can take appropriate action to preempt whatever atrocity they might be planning here.
The ICPO also alerted business establishments such hotels, pension houses and other billeting structures that may be used by the group as temporary shelter in their brief stay here.
The ICPO likewise alerted all businessmen, particularly the high risk establishments, to further tighten the implementation of security measures in their respective business premises.
While assuring that the PNP here is in control of the situation, Floro stressed the importance for everybody to remain vigilant and ask them to cooperate in helping police authorities to maintain peace and order in this highly urbanized city in Western Visayas.
Meanwhile, Police Regional Office 6 (PRO-6 regional director Chief Supt. Agrimero Cruz said that charges of robbery is scheduled to be filed against seven out of the almost 19 suspects who held-up the F&C pawnshop in Bacolod City. He, however, declined to name the suspects so not to jeopardize the ongoing police operation.
Citing report from Bacolod City Police Office's (BCPO) Special Operations Group, Cruz said the seven suspects' confirmed identification was based on the testimonies of the employees and security guard of the pawnshop who took a glimpse on the suspects during the daylight robbery despite they sported hats to hide their identities.
The BCPO also tagged the Dipolog-Ozamis-Parohinog robbery group as responsible in victimizing the cash division of Central Negros Electric Cooperative in Bacolod City last year, where they took away P3.6 million loot.
The suspects also carted an estimated P1 million worth of assorted jewelries and cash from the F&C Pawnshop and Jewelry Store whose owner was based in Iloilo City.