MANILA, Philippines – Four prospective overseas Filipino workers (OFW’s) were barred from leaving the country last month after presenting bogus documents in an attempt to convince authorities that they were financially capable to go on a foreign holiday, ABS CBN reports.
Bureau of Immigration (BI) officer-in-charge Ronaldo Ledesma said the suspected “tourist workers” were intercepted at the departure area of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport 2 terminal last October 6 as they were about to board a Philippine Airlines flight to Bangkok.
Ledesma said the female passengers were offloaded after they were subjected to secondary inspection by immigration officers who doubted their purpose in traveling abroad.
The BI chief declined to divulge the names of the women, saying “they are victims of illegal recruitment whose identities need not be publicized.”
He added that the incident should serve as a warning to others who want to work abroad that they should not deal with illegal recruiters.
“The law requires that all Filipino migrant workers must secure proper documentation and clearances from the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) to ensure that they are protected while working abroad,” Ledesma said in a statement.
Atty. Arvin Santos, BI airport operations chief, said the women presented counterfeit credit cards and other questionable documents to prove that they are legitimate tourists.
The passengers also had US$300 each in pocket money and hotel bookings in their port of destination.
“They readily admitted that the credit cards are fake and they bought the same in Bacolod City for P200 each,” Santos said.
He added that the women claimed to be sales representatives of a company called Prince Motor Corp. but could not answer when asked to name the products they were supposedly selling. Source: ABS CBN
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