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Boy, 10, saves 5 friends from kidnapper (Philippine Star)

ANGELES CITY, Philippines A 10-year-old boy foiled last Friday the kidnapping of his five friends after he recognized the suspected kidnapper as the man who snatched his two friends last month.

The suspect, identified as Leonel dela Cruz, 30, was reportedly waiting for five boys when he was arrested in Barangay Carangian in this city.

The boy saw Dela Cruz in the area and recognized him as the man who snatched his two friends on July 9 in Tarlac City.

Tarlac police director Superintendent Felix Verbo Jr. said the boy, whose name was withheld for security reasons, immediately sought the help of the police.

The boy said he too was sweet talked by Dela Cruz togo with him to Cubao in Quezon City, supposedly to shop. He said he changed his mind and refused to go with the suspect.

Investigators and the parents of the missing boys initially did not believe the boy’s claim that their children went with a man to Cubao.

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During inquest, Dela Cruz admitted taking the boys with him, saying he gave them to a group that forces children to beg.

The suspect admitted that at the time of his arrest, he was waiting for five boys whom he also planned to give to the group.

He said he was able to convince the boys to go with him when he told them that they would visit their two friends, whom he earlier snatched.

Verbo said he sent his men to Quezon City to look for the two boys.

Dela Cruz was charged with kidnapping and attempted qualified kidnapping.