by: Victor Reyes
Malaya, Thursday, June 17, 2010
A SUB-LEADER of the terrorist group Abu Sayyaf
was arrested yesterday by Marine soldiers and
Air Force intelligence operatives at his house
in Lantawan, Basilan.
Said Usman, alias Kaiser, surrendered after a
10-minute negotiation when he was cornered at
his residence at Bulanbulan village around 5
a.m, said Lt. Col. Fernando Gomez, commander
of the Marine Battalion Landing Team 1.
Gomez said Usman’s father, mother, second wife,
and five children, including a four-month-old
baby, were in the house with him. He said they
were not arrested as none of them have pending
Usman was arrested by virtue of a warrant issued
by a Basilan court for kidnapping and serious
illegal detention. A P1.2 million reward had been
earmarked for his arrest, he being in the
government’s list of wanted Abu Sayyaf leaders and
In a phone patch interview, Gomez said the arrest
of Usman came after several weeks of case build-up
by military units.
AFP public affairs office chief Lt. Col. Arnulfo
Marcelo Burgos said Usman’s brother, Algaber, was
seen in the vicinity during the early stage of the
case-build up but was not around when the troops
swooped down at the residence yesterday.
Algaber, also a member of the ASG, was among the
detainees who bolted out of the Basilan provincial
jail last December.
Burgos said Usman yielded an M16 rifle, a rifle
grenade, and documents. He was later brought at the
Edwin Andrews Air Base in Zamboanga City for further
He said Usman was involved in the May 27, 2001
abduction of American missionary couple Martin and
Gracia Burnham, American-Peruvian Guillermo Sobero
and 16 others from the posh Dos Palmas resort in
Puerto Princesa City in Palawan. Both Sobero and
Martin died in their hands.
Burgos said Usman also took part in the June 2001
siege of Lamitan, Basilan where Abu Sayyaf bandits
again took a number of hostages.
Air Force spokesman Lt. Col. Miguel Ernesto Okol
said Air Force intelligence operatives had been
tailing Usman since last week.
Okol said Air Force chief Lt. Gen. Oscar Rabena
congratulated the Air Force personnel involved in
the feat, adding that "their teamwork had been
consistent in capturing Abu Sayyaf terrorists in
the past months."