OPERATIVES of the Quezon City Police District (QCPD) have arrested eight followers of a disbarred lawyer for inciting sedition.
According to QCPD top cop Chief Supt. Joselito Esquivel, the suspects were supporters of Elly Pamatong, also known as Ragen Lao Pamatong, the same person who admitted scattering nails on the streets several years back deflating the tires of a number of vehicles.
Those nabbed were Celso Dumaguing, 51, Esterlita Dumaguing, 60, both from Brgy. Masambong; Ricardo Repaso, 46, Epefania Ilagan, 55, Ernesto Supera, 35, Maricel Añonuevo, 36, Cirilo Curit, 59, and Rolando Nastor, 58, all from Valenzuela City.
The suspects wearing black PNP-SWAT and military scout ranger uniforms were rounded up Wednesday around 11:30 a.m. for distributing flyers to passersby containing seditious statements against the government on Bonny Serrano corner 15th Avenue in Brgy. Socorro.
They were brought to the police station along with the bundles of flyers that were seized from them bearing the name and signature of Ragen Lao Pamatong, popularly known as Elly Pamatong.
Esquivel said all eight will be charged with inciting sedition and unlawful use of police uniforms.
Pamatong is a Filipino lawyer, politician, and the self-proclaimed President of the Philippines known for being a perennial candidate in Philippine elections. Pamatong was declared a nuisance candidate twice for his candidacy for president in 2004 and 2010 by the Commission on Elections.
Also in 2014, he was arrested for being allegedly involved in the Ninoy Aquino International Airport bombing plot by the far-right group United States Allied Freedom Fighters of the East (USAFFE), not to be confused with the United States Army Forces in the Far East), which Pamatong had established in 2003.
The Supreme Court of the Philippines disbarred Pamatong in 2016, after he criticized Judge Gregorio Pantonosas Jr. Pamatong has called on the high court to reverse the decision.
An outspoken critic of incumbent President Rodrigo Duterte, Pamatong filed a quo warranto petition before the Supreme Court in June 2018. He sought to oust Duterte on the grounds that his certificate of candidacy in the 2016 presidential elections was illegal.