A 23-year-old government employee was arrested by authorities for allegedly kidnapping himself and making-up stories to stay away from his family the other day in Zamboanga del Norte.
The suspect, who was taken in custody by the Sergio Osmeña Municipal Police Station, was identified as Joshua Ragasa Elia, of CENRO, Liloy, Zamboanga del Norte.
Reports said the suspect was arrested at 3:30 p.m. in one of the rooms of GV Hotel on Port Road, Ozamis City.
Prior to the incident, the live-in partner of the suspect, Gracechelle Mae S. Gubanes, 22, employee of One Network Bank, reported to police that the suspect was missing and allegedly abducted by unidentified suspects.
Gubanes said that at 8 a.m. on November 21, the suspect left their apartment in Purok Marang, Bgy. Paglaum Dos, Tubuaran District, Pagadian City, Zamboanga del Sur, to work.
However, at 10 a.m., Joshua texted her that he was already on board a Rural Bus Transit. At 1:56 p.m., Gubanes received a text message informing her that the suspect was allegedly kidnapped and asking her to prepare P150,000 within two weeks and wait for their message within one week.
Gubanes tried to contact the number 0977835766 of the texter but it was off. She also tried to call her boyfriend’s number but it was also turned off.
At 3:02 p.m. on the same date, Gubanes receive pictures of Joshua thru chat message under the account of Joshua Elia which showed a naked picture of the suspect and his hands tied inside a bathroom of an undisclosed place.
Gracechelle reported the incident to police, who conducted a follow-up investigation where they found out that the suspect was inside GV Hotel.
Osmeña policemen coordinated with Ozamis City police to recover Joshua.
During the rescue operation, it was found out that Joshua was not kidnapped but only making up stories to keep himself away from his family.