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Two fishermen were injured while another one was initially missing and later on retrieved from sea after a member of Bantay Dagat reportedly fired at the victims’ motor banca Tuesday afternoon, April 7, more or less one mile offshore of Sitio Green Island, Barangay Tumarbong, Roxas, Palawan.
In a report from Palawan Police Provincial Office, the victims were identified as Joven Palencia, 27, Eric Valenzuela Barlas, 34 and Mark Errol Orceo Bungay, 25, all residents of the said place while the suspect was identified as Ervil Betita Enojas, 48, Bantay Dagat member and a resident of Barangay 1 in Roxas, Palawan.
Based on the initial police investigation, a joint seaborne patrol operation was conducted by the personnel of Philippine Coast Guard and Bantay Dagat – Roxas when they intercepted one 16 HP white motor banca where the victims were onboard.
As the team introduced themselves as members of Bantay Dagat, the victims immediately speed up their engine and fled.
Further investigation revealed that the alleged illegal fishers particularly Joven Palencia thrown improvised dynamite (bongbong) twice to the chasing enforcers, making them evade and defend themselves once again.
At this point, the suspect Enojas shot the motor banca of the victims using an improvised shotgun to warn them, however, Eric Barlas was hit on his back and Mark Errol Bungay was hit on his right chest and right thigh while Joven Palencia fell into the sea and is now subject for retrieval operation.
Barlas and Bungay were immediately rushed to Roxas Baptist Hospital for medical treatment and later on transferred to Ospital ng Palawan.
Meanwhile, only this day, April 8 when Bantay Dagat, Philippine Coast Guard and Roxas MDRRMO recovered the body of Joven Palencia.
Case investigation is still ongoing while the suspect is now under police custody and will charge attempted homicide.