UNLICENSED FIREARMS. The high-powered firearms seized by police from a former village chief who ran and lost in the vice mayoralty race of Barira town, Maguindanao. The suspect, Usop Sanggacala Aron, did not resist arrest when served with a search warrant at Parang town of the same province on Friday (July 1, 2022). (Photo courtesy of Ferdinandh Cabrera - Cotabato News Group)

COTABATO CITY – A former village chairperson who failed in his vice mayoralty bid in Maguindanao was arrested Friday for possession of unlicensed high-powered firearms.

Usop Sanggacala Aron, former village chair of Barangay Rumirimbang in Barira town, Maguindanao, did not resist arrest when a warrant was presented to him at his house in Parang town, a report from the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) police office said.

Aron ran but lost in the vice-mayoralty race in Barira in the May 9 elections.

Lieutenant Col. Bernard Lao, head of the BARMM Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG), said Aron yielded four M16 rifles, an M14 rifle, an M203 rifle, a .380-caliber pistol, 16 pieces of 40mm grenade projectiles, and various ammunition.

Aron told police that he only owned two of the seized firearms although these were unlicensed.

He said the other firearms were pawned to his son by civilian neighbors and acquaintances.

Brigadier Gen. Arthur Cabalona, BARMM police director, has lauded the CIDG for a job well done. (PNA)