British man and his Filipina wife were kidnapped by armed gang
British man, 70, and his Filipina wife who were kidnapped from their own Philippines beach resort by armed gang and spirited away on motor boats
A British man and his Filipina wife have been kidnapped from their own beach resort by an armed gang before being spirited away on motor boats.
Allan Hyrons, 70, and Welma Paglinawan-Hyrons were abducted from a hut in their resort at 6.50pm on Friday by at least four men with pistols.
They were then dragged to two motorboats in Tukuran town in Zamboanga del Sur province and separated before being sped off in different directions.
One boat reportedly headed west along the coast to Pagadian City, the other went out to open sea.
Several young men in a nearby bar witnessed the abduction and some accounts say there were as many as six armed men.
Local police said that at least two of the gunmen had booked into the hotel the day before.
The provincial government in the province of Zamboanga del Sur has offered a reward of one million pesos (£15,688) for anyone with information that leads to the arrest of the kidnappers.
Police are searching for the unidentified gunmen and the couple, who own two schools in addition to the resort in the coastal town, he said.
No group has claimed responsibility for the latest abduction in the south, where kidnappings for ransom by Muslim militants and other armed groups have long been a security concern and have discouraged tourism, trade and investment, especially in remote and poorly guarded rural areas.
Military offensives against ransom-seeking militant groups such as the Abu Sayyaf have reduced abductions in recent years, but they continue to occur.
Philippine authorities say they are also trying to verify the reported abductions of three Indonesian fishermen last week off Malaysia’s Sabah state on northern Borneo island near the sea border with the southern Philippines, where Abu Sayyaf gunmen have staged kidnappings in the past, sparking a regional security alarm.
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