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BI notes: Mismatched work documents sign of trafficking too

Norman Tansinco
Bureau of Immigration commissioner Norman Tansinco with his officials. (JERRY S. TAN)

Saying mismatched documents are also red flags for human trafficking, Bureau of Immigration (BI) Commissioner Norman Tansingco warned overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) to be vigilant when applying for overseas jobs.

He issued the said warning following the interception of two trafficking victims at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) Terminal 2 last July 16, comprised of two female victims aged 42 and 30.

The victims were later assisted by the Inter-Agency Council Against Trafficking and have been referred for secondary inspection after presenting fraudulently-acquired work documents.

A report from the BI’s travel control and enforcement unit revealed that the two victims were told to pretend to be outbound seafarers by a local manning agency. One of the victims admitted to paying P120,000 to a recruitment agency, which was sent via money transfer after which they were referred to a local manning agency to secure their documentation.

Both were promised work as a cleaner and as a household service worker, and were given fake transit visas and seaman’s books.

“We have forwarded this case to the Department of Migrant Workers, who in the past have suspended and cancelled licenses of agencies doing such unscrupulous acts. The victims’ desire to work abroad is being taken advantage of by these traffickers,” said Tansingco.

Itchie G. Cabayan
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