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BI warns of scam returning OFWs, advises vs talking to strangers

DO not to be lured by scammers who would promise high- paying jobs in abroad as call center agents.

This warning was issued to departing overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) by Bureau of Immigration (BI) Commissioner Norman Tansingco, upon learning of the ordeal of an OFW who was recently repatriated from Laos where she worked for a “love scam” cybercrime syndicate without getting paid.

“Beware of strangers who will approach you with offers of high paying jobs overseas. They will only make your lives miserable at the expense of your families who depend on you for financial support,” Tansingco said in a statement.

The said OFW was supposed to return to Manila from Bahrain two months ago after working there as a legitimate domestic household worker for one year and eight months. However, during a layover of her return flight to Manila at the airport in Dubai, she was reportedly approached by a male stranger who offered her a job as a call center agent in Thailand with a monthly salary of P50,000.

Lured by promise of a high paying job, the victim accepted the stranger’s offer and joined the latter in flying to Bangkok instead of going home to the Philippines.

Upon arriving in Bangkok, the victim narrated that she was transferred to Chiang Rai province, Thailand where they took a boat in going to nearby Laos. She then worked for a “love scam” syndicate for two months but was not paid a single centavo for her services.

This prompted her to run away from her employers and seek assistance from the Philippine embassy in Vientianne.

The BI has previously released several advisories reminding Filipinos not to fall prey to syndicates recruiting aspiring overseas workers to work in pseudo-call centers, only to end up as scammers.

Itchie G. Cabayan
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