Philippine police arrest one suspect in deadly gold heist

(10-02) 03:01 PDT BAGUIO, Philippines (AP) --

Police said Thursday they have arrested a suspect in a gold heist that left five people dead at a northern Philippine mining compound last month.

The suspect, Joseph Coop, was identified by witnesses by his prominent limp, said regional police chief Victor Luga. He was arrested Wednesday at his residence in the village of Colalo, outside northern Mankayan town.

At least seven masked gunmen barged into the compound of Lepanto Consolidated Mining Co., the Philippines' largest gold mining company, killing four guards and an engineer in Mankayan on Sept. 20.

The gunmen fled with $254,000 in gold bars weighing more than 46 pounds.

The guards and the engineer were transporting the gold in a van from a refinery to a vault in another building in the vast mining area when the robbers approached the vehicle and opened fire with assault rifles.

Coop, who is facing multiple murder and robbery charges, denied any involvement, Luga said.

02/10/2003

Bron : San Francisco Chronicle

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