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Number of missing persons involved in 'sabong' now 34, says Bato

The number of missing persons involved in cockfighting has risen from 31 to 34, Senator Ronald "Bato" dela Rosa said Friday, citing the police.

"Thirty-one lang pala yung allegedly missing persons involved in game fixing but meron pa palang three missing persons ang allegedly involved in cloning accounts," dela Rosa said during the resumption of the hearing on the missing "sabungeros."

"This brings to a total of 34. Correction po hindi 31, kundi 34 na ang missing persons na recorded by the PNP (Philippine National Police)," he added.

(Actually 31 missing persons were allegedly involved in game fixing but we also have three more persons involved in cloning accounts. This brings the total to 34.)

Dela Rosa, a former PNP chief, chairs the Senate Committee on Public Order and Dangerous Drugs, which is conducting the investigation.

This was confirmed by Police Brigadier General Eliseo Cruz, chief of the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG), during the hearing.

"Yes, sir. But we are only handling six cases," he said when asked to confirm that 34 persons involved in cockfighting operations are missing.

Dela Rosa urged Cruz to also look into the other disappearances. Cruz said they are coordinating with concerned Police Regional Offices.

The PNP initially reported an incident involving four men who were reported missing after participating in a cockfight game in Sta. Cruz, Laguna, on January 13.

That same day, six men also went missing after participating in a cockfighting tournament in Manila.

When the CIDG investigation started, more reports of missing cockfight enthusiasts came in, like the 10 individuals in Bulacan who disappeared eight months ago after attending a match at the same arena in Sta. Cruz.  —KBK, GMA News