Two members of the notorious Epogon robbery group were arrested Monday afternoon after police managed to track their whereabouts to Sipalay City in Negros Occidental. Authorities identified the arrested as 29-year-old Francisco Epogon of the said city and 25-year-old Ruel Epogon, a resident of Bacolod City’s Barangay Handumanan.
Sipalay City Police Station deputy, Police Lieutenant Anthony Saing, said, around 9:00 a.m. on Monday, they were tipped off by a reliable source that the Epogon siblings were going to visit the city in order to attend their cousin’s burial. Police immediately set up a checkpoint near the Sipalay City Public Cemetery and, a few hours later, they flagged down the suspect’s vehicle and served them arrest warrants.
The elder Epogon had an outstanding warrant on theft charges issued by Judge Rosario Ester Orda Caise of the Kabankalan City Regional Trial Court-Branch 61; while his sibling was wanted on violations to RA 10591, or the Comprehensive Law on Firearms and Ammunition, which was issued by Judge Oscar Leo Billena of the Iloilo City Regional Trial Court-Branch 66.
A search of the suspects and their vehicle yielded a .45 caliber pistol, two .45 caliber magazines, 20 rounds of .45 caliber bullets, five .22 caliber bullets, one magazine for an M16 assault rifle, one .38 caliber revolver, and five .38 caliber bullets.
The pair are presently detained at the Sipalay City Police Station and may face additional firearms-related charges./DGB, WDJ