KOTA KINABALU: The last remaining member of the notorious Muktadil brothers, responsible for kidnap-for-ransom activities has been killed.
Badong Muktadil, the last of the six brothers who rained terror along Sabah’s east coast between late 2013 and 2015, was found dead in a pump boat near Siasi island after fleeing Philippines military operations on Tuesday when two of his brothers, Nelson @ Nikson and Braun @ Brown, were killed near Poh Tambulian, Daungdung, on Pata island.
“All six of the brothers have been neutralised. They will no longer be a threat in cross-border crimes,” an intelligence officer told The Star on condition of anonymity.
He said Badong escaped but sustained injuries in a shootout during the operation against the brothers at their hideout.
“He managed to get into a pump boat and headed towards the Mususiasi area in Siasi island, close to Jolo. On the way, he succumbed to his injuries,” the intelligence source said, adding that the dead man had been confirmed to be Badong.
Early on Tuesday, Philippine crack troops captured Nelson and Braun from the hideout. But they were killed hours later when they tried to escape while being escorted out of Pata island.
The six brothers led a gang in a series of cross-border kidnappings and murders in the east coast of Sabah and were high on the wanted list in Malaysia and the Philippines.
Another Muktadil brother, Mindas, was killed by Jolo police in May 2015, while his twin Kadafi was arrested in Jolo late last year and remains in jail facing an assortment of charges.
Badong was the eldest brother and was reported to be at large until his death was confirmed. A little-known sixth brother, Sampas, was also killed in the Philippines last year.
The source said the latest spate of kidnappings in Sabah’s Lahad Datu and Semporna areas were likely carried out by a local group operating in Tawi Tawi with local knowledge of and links in the area.
Other Filipino sources said key Abu Sayyaf gangs remained locked in battles with the Philippine military, and they believe the recent kidnapping of fishermen in Semporna was done by other localised groups.
Key Abu Sayyaf gang leaders such as Alhabsi Misaya and Indang Susukan, who worked with the Muktadil brothers, were also on the run, the sources said.
Five Malaysian sailors kidnapped in Lahad Datu in July are still being held by Abu Sayyaf on Jolo island.