State forces discovered at least P79 million cash and checks in a house within Marawi City after retaking a stronghold of the Maute fighters they have been fighting since the last month.
The Philippine Marines initially found P52.2 million in cash wrapped in plastic bundles at a house located near the extremists’ machine guns nest in the Mapandi area. The troops then found checks worth P27 million in the same house.
According to the authorities, the owner of the house was likely among the 200,000 residents who escaped from Marawi after the Maute group and other bandit groups attacked the city on May 23.
Moreover, the investigators are now looking into the cash and check’s paper trail to verify if the money is connected to the terrorists.
Meanwhile, President Rodrogo Duterte said that the Maute terrorists are being funded by foreign terror groups and illegal drug money.
On the other hand, a presidential spokesman said around 120 militants already died in the battle, along with 38 government forces. The authorities have also put the civilian death toll at between 20 and 38.
The violence erupted on May 23 after the Army raided the hideout of Isnilon Hapilon, the leader of the Abu Sayyaf militant group who has pledged allegiance of IS. Thus, this incident urged President Duterte to place the entire Mindanao Island under martial rule.
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