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China-bound victim of ‘Mail-Order-Bride’ scheme intercepted at NAIA

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Members of the Bureau of Immigration (BI)’s immigration protection and border enforcement section (I-PROBES) reported the interception of a 20-year-old female victim being escorted by a 34-year-old Chinese man.

The names of the victim and the suspect have been withheld in compliance with anti-trafficking laws. Both were turned over to the Inter-Agency Council Against Trafficking for further investigation filing of appropriate cases.

Initially, the victim presented herself to be bound for Shenzhen, China together with her alleged husband on an AirAsia flight, close to midnight of February 28 at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) Terminal 3.

“The immigration officer said both the victim and the suspect acted very suspiciously when asked about their supposed marriage,” said BI Commissioner Norman Tansingco.

They were referred to I-PROBES officers who stated that the female victim was unable to answer basic details about their marriage. She allegedly presented a PSA certificate of marriage stating that they were married in a restaurant in Pasig City.

Upon inspection by the BI’s forensic documents laboratory, it was confirmed that the document presented was genuine.

“However, our officers were alert enough to be suspicious of their statements, having seen several cases like it before,” said Tansingco.

The victim later admitted that no actual wedding happened, and the marriage certificate was processed by her Chinese escort through an agent. They admitted to have paid P45,000 for the processing of the genuine document with fake details.

“This is obviously another case of the mail order bride scheme that has resurfaced recently,” said Tansingco. “In these scheme, victims are made to pretend to be the spouse of a foreign national, but they end up as pseudo wives doing domestic work in their destination,” the BI chief said.

Itchie G. Cabayan
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