Philippine Police Arrest Suspect in Kidnapping of US Missionary Couple

Posted January 17th, 2012 at 8:40 am (UTC-5)
Leave a comment

Philippine police say they have arrested an Islamic militant suspected of involvement in the 2001 kidnapping of an American missionary couple.

Security officials said Tuesday the man, known as “Abu Ismael,” was captured on the remote southern island of Basilan.

They said he is a member of the Abu Sayyaf terror group, which is linked to al-Qaida and blamed for a series of bombings, kidnappings and beheadings.

Officials say Abu Ismael was one of the armed guards during the captivity of Gracia and Martin Burnham, fellow American Guillermo Sobero and a number of Filipinos.

Sobero was beheaded, and Martin Burnham was later killed in a raid by Philippine forces that freed Gracia Burnham.

Authorities also said the suspect was trained in bomb-making and helped carry out advanced planning for other kidnappings.