Published: Tue, June 20, 2017
Economy | By Melissa Porter

Philippine police say casino attacker was indebted gambler

Philippine police say casino attacker was indebted gambler

NOT A TERRORIST ATTACK Authorities had repeatedly insisted last week that the incident at Resorts World Manila, which is located near the Philippines' main global airport, was not an act of terrorism but a botched robbery attempt.

They have ruled out news that militants were behind the deadly attack, discrediting the loose claim of the IS that it was behind the attack. Carlos shot his automatic rifle into the air, but did not shot anyone in the casino.

To disprove the terrorist angle, officials of Resort World Manila released CCTV footage on Saturday (June 3) to show just where Carlos was and what he did that day.

Albayalde said the man was Jessie Carlos, 43, a Catholic with three children from Manila who had been banned from all casinos in April following a request from his family because of a gambling addiction.

The man was found dead in a room in a hotel next to the casino. He was forced to sell his Ford Ranger pickup truck to help pay for his debts.

According to an InterAksyon report, Carlos was a former employee of the Department of Finance.

Alvarez yesterday contradicted the initial findings of the police dismissing terrorism as the motive behind the Resorts World Manila attack last Friday.

Amreen Gomez, a security officer at Resorts World Manila, said witnesses interviewed had testified to seeing multiple assailants.

In his first remarks on the assault, Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte said Saturday that the attacker was simply "crazy".

Albayalde said the case is now considered closed as far as the identity of the gunman is concerned but investigations will still continue as to the liabilities of Resorts World Manila. He had on a black jacket when he was dropped off at the casino on Friday at 12:07 a taxi.

The video also showed him breaking into a secure room where chips and money were being kept, apparently intent on stealing what he could.

Carlos took an elevator to the second floor, and put a ski mask over his face. Out of the 22 casino guests and 13 employees, the majority of the victims were female.

Carlos had entered the capital's Resorts World Casino and began shooting, before setting fire to a gaming room. Inside the room, and out of view of security cameras, he lay down on the bed, set himself on fire and fatally shot himself, Mr. Gomez said.

A security guard tried but failed to stop Carlos as he was brandishing a baby armalite.

The footage from numerous security cameras shows the man's movements during the 90-minute episode.

Jessie Carlos, a Filipino, was "heavily indebted due to being hooked in casino gambling", Chief Superintendent Oscar Albayalde disclosed in a statement he read at a news briefing on Sunday, supporting police theory that the attack was a robbery gone awry.

The fires were most likely a diversionary tactic while the gunman robbed gambling chips from the casino, Albayalde said.

Most of the victims are believed to have died due to suffocation from the smoke.

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