BI: Wanted Canadian-American rape suspect arrested at NAIA

Aileen Cerrudo   •   November 11, 2019   •   257

The Bureau of Immigration (BI) has reported the arrest of a Canadian-American man accused of raping a 17-year-old girl in Subic more than a year ago.

Authorities identified the man as 54-year-old Fouad Bounab. He arrived Saturday (November 9) night at NAIA 3 terminal aboard an Air Asia flight from Kuala Lumpur.

Atty. Rommel Tacorda, who heads the BI’s border control and intelligence unit (BCIU), disclosed that Bounab is on the wanted list of the Interpol which earlier issued a red notice against him.

“He fled to Malaysia to evade prosecution for his crime. Fortunately, our counterparts in Malaysia were able to trace his whereabouts and he was arrested and brought back to Manila,” he said.

According to the BI, Bounab allegedly lured his minor victim to have sex with him through social media for the purpose of prostitution and sexual exploitation.

A warrant of arrest was issued by Olongapo City Regional Trial Court (RTC) Judge Gemma Logronio on July 8 this year against Bounab.—AAC

PH Immigration to deport 4 Indian nationals nabbed in Mindanao

Robie de Guzman   •   December 9, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – The Bureau of Immigration (BI) on Monday said it has arrested four Indian nationals for working as money lenders with expired and invalid visas in Mindanao.

In a statement, Immigration Commissioner Jaime Morente said the four Indian nationals were arrested on Dec. 3 at Purok Malakas, Brgy. San Isidro in General Santos City in an operation jointly launched by operatives from the Mindanao Intelligence task group of Immigration’s intelligence division and the Philippine National Police.

Morente said the operation against illegal aliens in Mindanao was conducted following complaints about foreigners engaged in a “5-6” lending scheme in the area.

The operatives initially rounded up 10 Indian nationals but six were recommended for release after they presented valid visas.

“However, we have recommended that the six still undergo further investigation to verify if they are still working with the companies that petitioned their visas,” said BI intelligence officer Melody Gonzales, who led the arresting team.

“The other four Indians presented expired and invalid visas and were found to be working as money lenders,” the bureau added.

The four arrested foreigners are presently detained at the Immigration district office in Davao City pending deportation proceedings.

The bureau, meanwhile, called on the public to help in its campaign against foreigners who violate the country’s immigration laws.  

“We reiterate our appeal to the public not to hesitate in reporting the presence of illegal aliens in any part of the country, including the far-flung areas of the country,” Morente said.

BOC seizes P1.6-M worth of high-grade marijuana at NAIA

Aileen Cerrudo   •   December 9, 2019

The Bureau of Customs (BOC) intercepted 973 grams of suspected high-grade marijuana at the Port of Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) on December 6.

The suspected high-grade marijuana came from the United States and has an estimated value of P1.6 million.

According to a statement by the BOC on their social media, the parcel declared as “Marvel Comic and Child Sleeping Bag” was intercepted by NAIA customs frontliners and operatives in coordination with the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA).

“The apprehended item was consigned to a certain individual from Taguig city and was found to contain three (3) vacuum sealed pouches of suspected Kush weed. The suspect was apprehended while claiming the said parcel,” the BOC reported.

“The suspect shall undergo inquest proceedings for violation of RA 9165 or the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002 in relation to RA 10863 or the Customs Modernization Tariff Act,” the BOC added.—AAC

34 suspected human trafficking victims rescued at NAIA

Robie de Guzman   •   December 5, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – The Bureau of Immigration (BI) on Thursday said it has rescued 34 women who were suspected to have been illegally recruited to work as household service workers in Saudi Arabia.

In a statement, the BI said the victims were intercepted at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) Terminal 1 last Saturday, Nov. 30 while they were about to board their flight to Riyadh.

Bureau of Immigration (BI) port operations chief Grifton Medina said the victims, mostly in their 20s and 30s, were stopped from leaving the country after immigration officers noticed “glaring discrepancies” and “irregularities” in the travel documents they presented.

Ma. Timotea Barizo, the bureau’s travel control and enforcement unit (TCEU) chief, said the 34 presented documents as overseas Filipino workers, but upon verification, numerous inconsistencies were discovered.

“The job descriptions on the visas of the victims indicated that they were hired as household service workers but their overseas employment certificates (OECs) and job contracts state that they were recruited as cleaners in companies,” Barizo said.

“Discrepancies like these are not allowed, especially when the actual work is in households rather than in companies, which puts our workers in greater risk,” the official added.

Their OECs were confirmed spurious by Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) representatives at the airport, the BI said.

The women, whose names were not divulged due to a prohibition in the anti-trafficking law, were later turned over to the Inter-Agency Council Against Trafficking (IACAT) for assistance and further investigation.

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