INDEED, Christmas is just around the corner.
And this early, the office of Bureau of Immigration (BI) Commissioner Jaime Morente has been receiving reports that fake immigration agents are already going around harassing foreign nationals in the country.
This triggered an advisory, where the BI chief warned the public against falling prey to the illicit schemes of such unscrupulous individuals who present themselves as BI agents only to harass and extort aliens.
According to BI spokesperson Dana Sandoval, a victim sent the BI a letter for verification of a notice he received via courier, inviting him to the BI office in connection with a purported investigation, lest be charged and deported.
The letter, she said, was signed by a certain Special Agent Juanito Balmas, who, upon verification, is nowhere to be found in the roster of BI employees.
Sandoval said that funnily, the victim was being asked to appear before the BI on a Saturday, when the agency is closed on weekends.
The suspect or whoever was trying to harass the victim will likely meet him at a nearby place to possibly extort money from him.
Morente clarifies that in the cases of legal notices, these are sent to foreign nationals using the BI’s official letterhead, and signed by legitimate employees of the agency.
The contact information of all the BI offices nationwide may be found at the BI’s website at www.immigration.gov.ph, should the public wish to verify communication sent to them.
The BI chief also said that the bureau has no room for aliens involved in illegal activities, whether past or present.
Proof that the BI is not allowing the country to be a haven for alien criminals is the recent arrest of a high-profile South Korean fugitive wanted in his country for distributing pornography.
Jung Yonggu, 38, was arrested morning of November 1 in Cebu City by operatives under BI- Fugitive Search Unit chief Rendel Ryan Sy, who were armed with a Warrant of Deportation issued in October by the BI against Jung for being an undocumented alien and a risk to public safety and security.
The BI was said to have received information about Jung’s crimes from South Korean authorities.
Upon receipt of the information, the BI immediately filed a charge against him and conducted an investigation to locate and arrest him.
Korean authorities reported that Jung has an outstanding warrant of arrest issued by the Seoul Central District Court in November 2018 for promoting and circulating pornography and other related crimes under the Criminal Code of the Republic of Korea.
He then fled to the Philippines in July 2018 to evade his conviction and arrest. His passport has reportedly been cancelled already by the Korean government, making him an undocumented alien.
Jung was said to be responsible for working with a Korean convict in the distribution of over 7,400 obscene videos via internet file sharing websites, allowing access to pornographic materials to thousands of online users.
He is now being temporarily held at the BI’s facility in Bicutan, Taguig pending the implementation of his deportation.
In the past, the BI has been consistently warning against numerous modes of operation involving fake employees.
Each time Christmas season is around, this problem usually surfaces anew. Hayzz…
Jokjok (from Fernando Rosales of Pampanga)
KIDNAPER: Hello! Magkano nyo tutubusin ang anak nyo!?
MAGULANG: 500 thousand.!
KIDNAPER: Huh? Hindi pwede! Dapat may MILYON ang usapan!!!
MAGULANG: Uhmm.. Sige, KALAHATING MILYON!!
KIDNAPER: ‘Yan , ganyan!!O, sige! DEAL!!!
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