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BI runs after illegal recruiters — turns over man and 3 victims to IACAT

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THREE Malaysia-bound passengers posing as trainees for a construction company were intercepted by Bureau of Immigration (BI) authorities at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) Terminal 3.

Bureau of Immigration (BI) Commissioner Norman Tansingco disclosed that the passengers were traveling with their supposed employer as they attempted to board a Cebu Pacific flight to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia last November 13. All three passengers, as well as their courier, were turned over to the Inter-Agency Council Against Trafficking (IACAT) for further investigation and filing of appropriate charges against the recruiters.

The passengers, initially declaring themselves as operations manager, site supervisor, and painter supervisor with five years of experience, were flagged for secondary inspection when they gave inconsistent statements when asked about basic details of their trip.

According to Tansingco, the passengers eventually admitted to not personally knowing their supposed employer, revealing that their acquaintance began only this year.

Further investigation revealed that one passenger had paid P60,000 to their recruiter, who facilitated their departure to secure waiter jobs in Dubai and Malaysia. Of the amount, P10,000, was purportedly designated for membership in an organization with accredited chapters in Malaysia and Dubai, the passenger recounted.

Tansingco further said that the intercepted passengers only discovered the job opportunity through a Facebook posting, as he highlighted the risks associated with unverified job postings on the internet.

“The public is reminded to follow proper procedures when seeking employment abroad,” he said. “As the government continues to safeguard the welfare of Overseas Filipino Workers, we urge the public to verify job opportunities abroad through reputable channels and authorized agencies to avoid falling victim to deceptive schemes,” Tansingco added.

Itchie G. Cabayan
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