Fear grips Libon town; RD Buenafe orders Concepcion Gang crackdown

NAGA CITY, 12/3/16 (Bicol Standard) — “He is armed, dangerous, and notorious.”

This is how Bicol PNP Regional Director Chief Supt. Melvin Buenafe described Gilbert Concepcion, the leader of Concepcion Gang that operates in Albay.

Bicol PNP Regional Director Chief Supt. Melvin Buenafe
Police records show that Concepcion’s group had allegedly killed 26 people, and wounded at least six others since 2013.

The most recent victim is Lorivie Marano, of Barangay Libtong, Libon who was shot to death together with her 9-month unborn baby.

Buenafe has already ordered an immediate manhunt of the gang leader and his supporters who have sown terror in the town of Libon, Albay for the past few years.

“We are living in extreme fear due to the recent spate of killings,” a local resident who was interviewed by this paper, but requested anonymity, said.

Peace and Order Council meeting

To rally the support of the residents of Libon, the members of the Municipal Peace and Order Council held an emergency meeting on Thursday.

In attendance were Libon Mayor Wilfredo Maronilla, Senior Supt. Antonino Cirujales, director of the Albay Provincial Police Office, Chief Insp. Edgar Azotea, police chief of Libon Municipal Police Office, and Lt. Col Eduardo Monjardin, commander of the Army's 83rd Infantry Batallion.

They were in unison in condemning the atrocities and banditry perpetrated by said gang.

Series of crimes

During said meeting, Libon Police Chief Azotea emphasized that apart from the recent murder of Lorivie Marano, the group is tagged in several other crimes.

In 2012, the group was implicated in the murder of Makati City engineer Nelson Morales.

The police are also verifying reports that Gilbert is involved in the shooting of his own father in Barangay Molosbolos earlier this year.

Apart from these, Gilbert is also facing a charge for rape after an alleged sexual abuse of his cousin.

Furthermore, there are reports that the Concepcion Gang is involved in the illegal drug trade and extortion activities in the area, Azotea said.

Concerted efforts

In response to the series of crimes, the local government unit has pledged to raise funds to add to the existing reward money offered for the capture of Gilbert Concepcion and the tracking down of the whereabouts of his cohorts.

Meantime, Regional Director Buenafe said that the residents must cooperate with the authorities in these efforts.

Already, the police are working with the Philippine Army and the local government unit to combat the illegal activities of the Concepcion Gang.

“Everybody’s cooperation is necessary,” he stressed.