For Philippine Rebels, Election Is a Cash Cow

Communist guerrillas are expected to extort more money from politicians before national elections scheduled for May 10, the Philippine military said Sunday.

In a report issued to journalists, the military said that it had identified the modus operandi of the Communists in extorting what the rebels call “revolutionary taxes” from businesses and that they are more focused on collecting money from politicians in exchange for access to areas controlled or influenced by the rebels.

The commander of the armed forces’ civil relations service, Brig. Gen. Francisco N. Cruz Jr., said in the report that the Communists had even collected “permit to win” fees in exchange for a promise of victory by a candidate. He said those who refused to pay were punished.

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