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Mail-order bride scheme victim says she got married inside travel agency

Norman Tansingco
BI Commisioner Norman Tansingco said his men rescued a Filipina suspected of being victimized by the mail-order-bride scheme. (JERRY S. TAN)

A Filipina suspected of being victimized by the mail-order-bride scheme has told Bureau of Immigration (BI) probers that she and her alleged husband were married inside a travel agency in Manila.

The victim was intercepted at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) Terminal 1 by members of the BI’s immigration protection and border enforcement section (I-PROBES) headed by Bienvenido Castillo III, while attempting to depart for Fujian, China last April 8 with her alleged husband.

Both the victim and her pseudo-husband were turned over to the Inter-agency council against trafficking for further investigation.

Castillo said that the two were able to present a marriage certificate, claiming that they were married in 2019. However, officers doubted her statements citing numerous inconsistencies between her statements and the documents she presented.

Contrary to the certificate she presented, the victim claimed that she and her alleged husband were married inside a travel agency in Manila.

Also, she admitted that they paid P100,000 to obtain the marriage certificate, which was inspected by the BI’s forensic documents laboratory and found to be genuine.

“This is yet again another case of the mail-order-bride scheme wherein women are promised a better life abroad but are made to work as domestic workers with little to no salaries,” notes BI Commissioner Norman Tansingco.

Itchie G. Cabayan
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