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A SUSPECTED drug courier was killed when he traded shots with lawmen conducting a checkpoint along the North Cotabato-Bukidnon national highway in Carmen, North Cotabato Sunday, police said.

Colonel Maximo Layugan, North Cotabato police director, quoting a report from Carmen Municipal Police Office, identified the suspect as Allan Guiabal Palut alias Guiabal Embadel, of Barangay Kibenes, Carmen, North Cotabato.

Palut, 38, was killed in a shootout after he fired at checkpoint personnel along the Sayre highway at about 4 p.m. Sunday.

A team of policemen and elements of the 7th Infantry Battalion manning the checkpoint noticed a suspicious man on motorbike nearby.

“When approached for inspection, the suspect fled, forcing police and the soldiers to chase him,” Layugan said. As the pursuit operation was going on, Palut fired at the soldiers, triggering a shootout.

Palut was hit and rushed to a hospital in Carmen but expired later.

Aside from the motorbike, seized from the slain suspect was the .45-caliber pistol he used against the lawmen and a sling bag that contained dried marijuana leaves, shabu paraphernalia, and a two-way hand held radio.(By Edwin Fernandez)

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