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Rebel Philippine captain surrenders
Failed coup leader's lawyer says move recognises new president's "legitimacy".
Last Modified: 08 Jul 2010 05:01 GMT
Faeldon, picture on right, has been on the run since November 2007 [EPA]

A fugitive captain in the Philippine military, accused in two failed coup attempts, has turned himself in after three years on the run.

Nicanor Faeldon, 44, surrendered "in recognition of the legitimacy" of Benigno Aquino III, the new president, his lawyer said on Wednesday.

"He was not captured," Trixie Angeles said. "He voluntarily returned to his camp. This has been planned long ago because he wanted himself to be under the jurisdiction of a duly elected president."

Aquino won May elections by a landslide on promises to fight poverty and corruption, and was sworn in on June 30.

Faeldon, a former bomb-making trainer, was first implicated in the takeover of high-rise apartments at the heart of Manila's Makati financial district in July 2003, when 300 junior officers rigged the area with bombs and demanded the resignation of Gloria Arroyo, the then president.

They also denounced corruption within the armed forces.

Escaped

Faeldon was detained along with the other suspected coup plotters and charged with taking part in a failed power grab. He escaped from military detention in December 2005, but was captured a month later.

In November 2007, he walked out of a Makati court trial with other rebel officers and marched across the financial district before occupying the five-star Peninsula hotel. Most of his companions were captured but Faeldon escaped again.

Faeldon and his co-accused have said they did not plan to stage coups and were simply protesting against Arroyo's policies.

Faeldon told the ABS-CBN TV network that he was ready to face the charges against him.

"I'm ready to be put in jail for as long as it takes," he said.

Source:
Agencies
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