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Philippines - Political killing

Former governor wanted for politician murder arrested in Manila

Article published on the 2009-09-02 Latest update 2009-09-02 13:30 TU

Vincente Valera was arrested in the financial district of Manila.(Photo: Reuters)

Vincente Valera was arrested in the financial district of Manila.
(Photo: Reuters)

After three years on the run, a former Philippine governor wanted for the murder of House of Representatives member Luis Bersamin has been arrested in Manila.

Police say Vicente Valera surrendered peacefully on Tuesday after being discovered at a condominium in the financial district of the Philippine capital.

Valera has been on the run since the high-profile assassination of Luis Bersamin on the steps of a Manilan church in 2006. The two were once friends but became political rivals. Two other suspects have been arrested but Valera is said to be the key suspect in the shooting.

As the former governor of Abra province in Luzon island, police say Valera was known to rule using hired guns. Police are now trying to disband Valera’s private army and confiscate his weaponry.

Violence in the Philippines often flares up around election time with dozens of people killed around political campaigns. National and regional elections take place in the Philippines in 2010.

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