By: Jennifer P. Rendon
Twenty-two persons were collared Wednesday afternoon for allegedly participating in a spider derby at Barangay Guzman-Jesena, Mandurriao, Iloilo City.
Police Major Marlon Valencia, Mandurriao police chief, said most of the suspects are from Molo district and the towns of Oton, Pavia, and Pototan in Iloilo province.
“Several of them are students and the youngest suspect is 21 years old,” Valencia said.
Valencia said six officers carried out the operation against the “spider derby” and managed to arrest the 22.
“We believe that there were about 50 persons who were housed under the canopy when our operatives arrived,” he said.
But most of them scampered away after seeing the police officers.
Valencia said the derby area was at the back portion of Arthur Casipe’s house.
“We’ve been receiving reports that Casipe hosted the spider fight. Daw bulangan s’ya but for spiders,” he said.
Police recovered boxes, sticks, and P1,740 cash money.
Three days ago, Valencia also checked on reports about the spider derby in the area based on tips from a resident. But it turned out negative.
The information about the massive spider derby in the area came a week ago after residents noticed the crowd at Casipe’s backyard.
Valencia said the suspects will be charged for violation of Presidential Decree 1602, which imposes stiffer penalties on illegal gambling.
Spider derby is considered a popular blood sport among Filipino children, especially in the Visayas region.
The game begins by placing two spiders at opposite ends of a stick. The spiders are then prodded to move along the length of the stick until they encounter each other and fight to their deaths.