The military troops are still sweeping Marawi City in search of at least P1 billion loot hidden by members of the terrorists who occupied the area, said Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) chief General Eduardo Año on Tuesday.
Members of the Maute-ISIS stole the money by force from several banks and houses throughout the five-month siege.
The terrorists who planned to escape government attacks hid the money somewhere inside the city. The terrorists were supposed to come back for it once the battle is over, Año said.
“Ang pinaplano kasi nila, kanya-kanyang tago at baon sila eh. Para kung sakaling matapos ‘yung siege, makatakas sila, puwede nilang balikan,” Año said. “I believe andito pa ‘yan.”
The group is believed to be still keeping at least 20 hostages and 36 of their family members as per an article by GMA News on Tuesday, 5:44PM.
The military is celebrating but are still on heightened alert after the killing of Abu Sayyaf leader Isnilon Hapilon and Maute leader Omar Maute have been confirmed.
Aside from searching for possible hostages and the said ‘loot,’ troops are also clearing the main battle area of remaining bombs or traps set by terrorists.
Earlier this year, reports have been made that P79 million worth of cash and checks were recovered from a stronghold of the Maute group. Could this be a part of the loot?