Manila Police identifies suspects behind Binondo bank robbery

A screenshot from the CCTV video showing the robbers entering Metrobank Binondo yesterday morning. <i>Photo: ABS-CBN News</i>
A screenshot from the CCTV video showing the robbers entering Metrobank Binondo yesterday morning. Photo: ABS-CBN News

The chief of the Manila Police District (MPD) today identified the five men suspected to be behind last week’s robbery of a Metrobank branch in the Philippine capital’s Binondo district.

MPD chief Brig. Gen. Vicente Danao identified the suspects as Gilcar Dumagan Mofan (aka Jing Mofan), the man who allegedly entered the bank first; Noli Bonifacio Casuela (aka Lito Dapitan), who allegedly went in second; Marlon “Ailon” Parojinog, allegedly the leader of the group; Frederex B. Secretario; and a certain “Michael,” who also uses the aliases Pilay and Batang Calunod.

The police have yet to determine how much money was taken from the bank, reported Remate. 

Photo: Zyann Ambrosio/ABS-CBN News
Photo: Zyann Ambrosio/ABS-CBN News

Danao said the men have ties to the Parojinog clan, a once-influential political family from Ozamiz City, Misamis Occidental whom President Rodrigo Duterte accused in 2017 of benefitting from the illegal drug trade.

The MPD chief said witnesses positively identified the five men as the ones who barged in and robbed the bank, reported The Philippine Daily Inquirer. He also believes that the suspects could be the same group behind the Metrobank Tuguegarao heist which occurred in Cagayan Province in August last year.

“They have the same modus operandi, the same names, the same style. There were also five suspects who robbed [the bank] in Cagayan last year,” Danao said.

Manila Mayor Isko Moreno said today that the Metrobank branch in Binondo has yet to cooperate with their investigation, reported ABS-CBN News. Moreno has offered a PHP1 million (US$19,595) reward to anyone who could provide information that would lead to the suspects’ arrest.

MPD is still studying the possibility that the heist is an inside job. According to the police, they were not allowed to immediately enter the bank to investigate. Moreno had to intervene and ask the bank’s staff to let the cops in. By the time they did, two hours had passed since the robbers left the bank.

Danao finds it strange that the bank opened earlier than 9am, the start of official banking hours. He also said that based on CCTV footage, the guards appeared to have not resisted the robbers when they entered the establishment.

The MPD has launched a manhunt for the five suspects.

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