Aida Fariscal

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Aida D. Fariscal (born 1940?) is a former police officer and watch commander in the Manila Police Department in the Philippines. She is now a retired grandmother living on pension in a one bedroom apartment. Her name is largely unknown outside of the Philippines. She was depicted in the 2006 docudrama The Path to 9/11, although by a much younger actress. An actress portrays her in the Mayday (Air Emergency, Air Crash Investigation) episode "Bomb on Board."[1]

Fariscal spent seventeen years as a homemaker before enrolling in the police department in 1977. The widow of a slain police officer, she rose through the ranks of the Manila Police Department, and in 1983 won an award for arresting three murder suspects on Mindoro Island.

Antiterrorism[edit]

On the night of January 6, 1995, she was suspicious about a small fire that went out unassisted at the Doña Josefa Apartments; her suspicions were augmented by a wave of bombings that hit Metro Manila, and Philippine Airlines Flight 434. This led her to uncover a terrorist plot made by alleged Al Qaida agents named Operation Bojinka. She came to the apartment with a partner, looked around, and left after a telephone rang. She had to ask 11 judges to find one that would grant her a search warrant. She, along with a group of investigators and police then uncovered evidence, before arresting a suspect who called himself Ahmed Saeed. She refused to let go of a suspect, who turned out to be Abdul Hakim Murad, after he offered her 110,740 Philippine pesos ($2,000 U.S. dollars).

Her decision to investigate the fire possibly saved thousands of lives, including possibly that of Pope John Paul II. She received a monetary award of the equivalent of 33,222 pesos ($700) and a trip to Taiwan from the government. She also won a laminated award from the CIA for her action. The certificate reads, "Awarded to Senior Inspector Aida D. Fariscal, in recognition of your personal outstanding efforts and co-operation." After she foiled the plot, the Philippine police assigned her two bodyguards for five years. The bodyguard service ended shortly before September 11.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Bomb on Board." Mayday.

External links[edit]