Police warn of robbers’ ‘ketchup modus’ in MRT

A passenger almost fell victim to what was dubbed the “ketchup modus” during a trip on the MRT.

According to a “24 Oras” report by Emil Sumangil on Thursday, Cris Manimtim said that he was told there was ketchup on his back and that he could clean it up at a comfort room at Shaw Boulevard station.

“That time din po naikwento na sa ‘kin ng kaibigan ko na parang nangyari na sa kanya yun, na may nilagay sa likod nya then nung pinansin niya after nun nawalan siya ng cellphone, so parang naging aware na wag pansinin yun kahit kumakalat na yung ketchup sa likod ko,” he said.

(A friend told me that it happened to him before, that someone put something on his back and when he attended to it, he lost his phone, so I became aware that I should just ignore the ketchup on my back)

Earlier, the police served an arrest warrant for illegal drugs against a suspect who was also found to be an alleged leader of a group of snatchers at the MRT.

“Itong tao na ito, lider pala ito ng grupo ng mga mandurukot. Matagal ng nag ooperate ito. Since nine years old pa lang siya, ito na ang trabaho niya,” said Eastern Police District Special Operations Unit chief Police Major Raul Salle.

(This person turned out to be the leader of the robbers. The group has been operating for a while. He has been doing it since he was nine years old)

“During rush hour, may kasama siya tatlo hanggang apat na tao…From Guadalupe MRT station, sasakay sila [at] maaayos ang attire nila. Sasama sila hanggang GMA Station sa Quezon City… Iipitin nila yung tao. Tinitingnan nila ang mga mamahaling gadgets… ‘yun ang kinukuha nila, wallet,” he added.

(During rush hour, he has three to four accomplices… From Guadalupe MRT station, they would ride, they are in decent attire. They’d ride along until GMA Station in Quezon City. They would entrap the victim. They’d check out the expensive gadgets… that’s what they’d take, the wallet)

The group allegedly also targeted multiple UV Express vehicles and jeepneys.

“Pagkabayad nila, iko-cover nila yung isang kamay nila, yung isang kamay ang gagalaw, yun ang magbubukas ng zipper… pasa sa iba,” Salle said.

(When they pay, they’d cover their hand, then their other hand would move to open the zipper… passing it to someone else)

A follow-up operation is being conducted to determine where the stolen items were brought after the crime.

“Let’s say ang halaga ay P50,000, binebenta lang nila ito ng P5,000 to P10,000… Yun ang ating tinatrabaho, yung matukoy natin ang lugar at kung kanino binabagsak ang mga ito,” Salle said.

(Let’s say the value is P50,000, they’d sell it for P5,000 to P10,000… That’s what we’re working on, to figure out where and who receives the stolen items)

Meanwhile, the EPD reminded the public to always stay alert in public to avoid falling victim to similar modus.

“Kailangan natin mapagmasid palagi sa mga katabi natin, so pag alam natin na bumundol sa atin, bantayan agad ang vaulables… i-secure mo,” said EPD Director Police Brigadier General Wilson Asueta.

(We always have to observe the people next to us, so we’d know if someone bumps us, we immediately protect our valuables… We must secure them)

“Huwag ka ng maglagay sa side pockets ng bag… Mas maganda ilagay mo na sa pinakaloob,” Salle said.

(Don’t place anything on the side pockets of the bag… It would be better to place it inside). —Jiselle Anne Casucian/LDF, GMA Integrated News

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