CITY OF SAN FERNANDO – An alleged shootout in nearby Mexico town over the weekend between the police and members of a gunrunning-robbery gang ended with five suspects dead.
Lt. Col. Michael Masangkay, chief of the 2nd Provincial Mobile Force Company, said the firefight arose from a failed gun buy-bust operation in Barangay Nueva Victoria, Mexico.
Initial police reports said the suspects were onboard a gray Mitsubishi Expander without license plates on the way to meet a prospective buyer of firearms when flagged down. The suspects, reports added, were on tight watch following information of their alleged criminal activities in Pampanga and other areas in Central Luzon.
The firefight ensued, police said, when the suspects fired at the operatives, prompting them to fire back. All the suspects died inside the vehicle.
Only two of the fatalities had been identified by the police. They were Mark Lester Corpus Lopez, a native of Laoag City, Ilocos Norte; and Marvin Villareal Cunanan, 27, of Barangay Sta Lucia, Magalang, Pampanga. The three other suspects remained unidentified as of press time.
Recovered at the crime scene were three 9 mm pistols, a homemade .45 handgun, a crowbar and bolt cutter that police said are common burglary tools, and spent shells of different calibers.
Police investigators also took custody of the Mitsubishi Expander used by the suspects.
The suspects’ bodies were brought to a funeral parlor in Mexico.