‘Crypto-trafficking syndicate’ victims intercepted at ports

THE Bureau of Immigration (BI) announced last Sunday its officers from Manila and Pampanga have intercepted six suspected victims of a “crypto trafficking syndicate.”

BI Immigration Norman Tansingco immediately expressed alarm over the growing number of Filipinos recruited by trafficking syndicates to illegally work in business process outsourcing (BPO) companies abroad but ended up working for scamming companies abroad.

“We reiterate our warning not to entertain offers received on social media, and always coordinate with the Department of Migrant Workers when applying for legal work abroad,” Tansingco added.

BI-Travel Control and Enforcement Unit Chief Ann Camille Mina reported that three of the victims were intercepted at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport Terminal 3 last January 20, after attempting to leave the country via an Air Asia flight to Bangkok.

The trio initially claimed to be traveling on a company group tour and presented several documents proving their affiliation with the said local company.

However, further inspection showed the trio gave inconsistent statements, prompting the officer to refer them for secondary inspection.

During that inspection, the trio confessed they were bound for Laos and were offered P40,000 to work as a customer service representative, a sales representative and a cook in an investment company.

They claimed they were recruited through an agent they met on social media.

Meanwhile, officers at the Clark International Airport intercepted last January 31 three male victims who attempted to fly to Thailand via a Scoot Airlines flight.

The three also claimed to be working for a local cargo company, and are traveling together on a group tour.

However, they later admitted to have been recruited to work as encoders and e-games staff and were offered a salary of $1,000 by an agent they only communicated through a social messaging application.


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