31 arrested, over 50 Chinese women rescued in Parañaque ‘sex den’ raid

Robie de Guzman   •   September 19, 2019   •   986

MANILA, Philippines – Some 21 Chinese women were rescued from an alleged sex den in Baclaran, Parañaque City in an operation conducted by authorities early Thursday (Sept. 19).

Operatives of the National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) and Bureau of Immigration raided a wellness spa inside a building after they received information it was allegedly offering an “extra service” to its clients.

The operation yielded the arrest of around 13 individuals who allegedly operated the business and 18 of its Chinese customers.

Seven Filipinos who worked as maintenance personnel were also nabbed.

“Prostitution den ito na napag-alaman natin na wala pala itong busines permit at wala ring itong occupancy permit. Ibig sabihin, itong building na ito ay hindi pa tapos and yet ito ay ginagamit na for prostitution,” NCRPO director Major General Guillermo Eleazar said.

Authorities also recovered pieces of evidence relating to the business’ operation, including P1.8 million earnings of the said spa.Police said the 13 den operators will be charged with violation of the Republic Act 10364 or the Expanded Anti-Trafficking in Persons Act of 2012. – RRD (with details from Correspondent Asher Cadapan Jr.)

Parts of Baclaran under ‘calibrated lockdown’, Mayor Olivarez says

Robie de Guzman   •   May 21, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – Some areas in Baclaran, Parañaque City have been placed under a three-day “calibrated lockdown”, Mayor Edwin Olivarez announced.

In a Facebook post, Olivarez said the following areas will be on lockdown starting Thursday, May 21:

  • Bagong Sikat
  • Bagong Lipunan
  • Bagong Pag-asa
  • Bagong Ilog
  • E. Rodriguez
  • Bagong Buhay
  • Bagong Silang
  • Dimasalang Extension
  • Mabuhay
  • 12 De Junio

Olivarez said the lockdown will take effect from 6 a.m. of Thursday, May 21 until 12 midnight of Saturday, May 23.

During the lockdown, home quarantine passes are temporarily suspended and only those who are working as frontliners will be allowed to go out of their residences.

“Para sa mas epektibong pagpapatupad ng “lockdown,” bawat tahanan ay pagkakalooban ng kanilang pangunahing pangangailangan tulad ng pagkain at tubig na ipapamahagi ng ating pamahalaang lungsod mula Huwebes ng hapon hanggang sa ikatlong araw (Sabado), sa pakikipagtulungan ni Kapitan Jun Zaide ng Barangay Baclaran,” Olivarez said.

The mayor also said that mass testing among residents, and a total disinfection will be conducted during the lockdown.

As of May 20, Parañaque City has a total of 652 coronavirus cases with 42 deaths and 355 recoveries.

BI intercepts suspected human trafficking victim at NAIA

Robie de Guzman   •   March 10, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – The Bureau of Immigration (BI) on Tuesday said its personnel at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) have rescued a suspected human trafficking victim attempting to depart the country.

In a statement, Immigration Commissioner Jaime Morente said the female passenger was intercepted at the NAIA Terminal 1 on March 6 while she was attempting to board a flight to Singapore.  

Morente said the victim, whose name was withheld for her protection, was initially referred for verification to the on-duty immigration supervisor, as she attempted to enter the airport departure area.

“The supervisor noticed that the stamps on the passenger’s passport and boarding pass were spurious. Upon further verification, they have discovered that the stamp used was not a registered stamp,” he said.

The passenger later confessed that she did not undergo immigration inspection, and that she was intending to travel to Dubai for work under a job application with a certain agent named “Rency”.

“She was instructed to meet the agent at a fast food chain in the airport’s departure area. The agent got a hold of her passport and boarding pass, and gave them back to her with fake stamps,” BI Intelligence Division Chief Fortunato Manahan, Jr. said.

Manahan added that human traffickers would affix fake stamps in the passengers’ passports and boarding passes, so that their victims, when asked by authorities, could pretend they have already undergone the required immigration departure formalities.

“Since human traffickers could not provide the passengers with proper documents to work abroad, this is their cheap attempt to get their victims to evade immigration inspection,” he said.

The victim has been endorsed to the Inter-Agency Council Against Trafficking for proper assistance in filing a criminal complaint against her recruiter, the BI said.

The bureau also reiterated its advise for the public to only transact with registered and licensed recruitment agencies to avoid falling prey to illegal recruiters.

House panel to look into $1.02-B cash brought in by Chinese nationals

Aileen Cerrudo   •   March 2, 2020

The House committee on ways and means is set to look into the $1.02 billion in cash allegedly brought in by Chinese nationals in an alleged money laundering scheme.

Committee panel chairman Albay Rep. Joey Salceda called on a closed-door session on Tuesday (March 3) to discuss the issue.

Salceda approved the motion of Nueva Ecija Rep. Estrellita Suansing to conduct an investigation on the $160.58 million in cash allegedly brought into the country by Chinese citizens from December 2019 to February 2020.

However, Salceda said there is $840 million that entered the country through Customs.

“The $160 million that was reported is just a tip of the iceberg. Based on our reports, I have seen that on top of $160 million, there was $840 million that entered last year through Customs through the airports,” he said.

“There is an obvious and apparent use of the power of the Customs covering portable commodities and declaring it without passing through the banking system. Otherwise, this would have had red flags all over the place already. The thing there, it’s $1.02 billion, not $160 million,” Salceda added.—AAC (with reports from Vincent Arboleda)


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