I have a dog. His name is Almond. When I come home after spending hours in torturous traffic, his tail wags away all the karmic evil in my world. He loves pillows and so he has his own, and he lies on it when we watch TV together. I can go on and on about my dog, and in my twilight years I shall endeavor to write my own bible about the virtues of a pet.
Now, on the opposite side of canine goodness, are vile, two-legged monsters disguised as humans. They only appear to be human. Human beings have hearts that beat and feel and strive to make other people’s hearts happy. These monsters have dead hearts, and yet they live to serve a dark purpose as Lucifer’s motivational speakers. I consider these monsters as the scum of the scum of the scummiest creatures on earth. In our world, they are called the illegal recruiters.
Why do I hate illegal recruiters so much? Illegal recruiters are thieves. They steal dreams and strip people of their money, honor, and future. Their “job” is to find honorable people with a genuine desire to work abroad but are gullible enough to part with their money to cover “placement or processing fees.”
Remember these names: Osmando “Ozhie” N. Habilag, Veraflor de los Reyes, and Alejandro Navarro. The older guy, “Ozhie” owns Bantayog Travel and Tours, which was located at 2/F Unit C CL Building, Biwas, Tanza, Cavite. Navarro, owns PADS Travel and Tours, located at 164 Mother Ignacia Avenue, Quezon City. Osmando and Alejandro are cousins.
These two male monsters have duped at least 200 job-seekers, mostly from Davao City and Davao del Norte, out of “processing fees” ranging from P70,000 to P300,000.
Veraflor de los Reyes owns Visa Assist Fortune Diamond Rays, a travel consultancy in Davao. She refers clients to Bantayog Travel and Tours and PADS Travel and Tours.
On her Facebook page, the she-monster posted:
Work abroad, short-term process, big salary, hassle free, renewable visa, free accommodation in Japan, Australia, Germany and Canada.
Hassle-free? Short-term process? Renewable visa? Music to every dreamer’s ears! Sadly, many of these dreamers bought the lie, and were told to fly to Manila, and oh, hurry up, because the slots are limited.
Sam, who works as a butcher from Davao City, borrowed money from his brother who works in New Zealand. Sam thought the lie was true. He flew to Manila and was met at the airport by one of Ozhie’s agents. Sam paid Osmando P180,000 in three days. He wanted to make sure that one of the limited slots was his. Three others, who also work as butchers from Davao City, followed his lead. They paid Ozhie money borrowed from someone else.
The victims said they were recruited between March and May 2016. The monsters seduced dreamers with this common script:
Immediate deployment within 30 to 60 days.
They will leave the country as “name-hires” through the POEA.
Ozhie’s cousin, Alejandro of PADS Travel and Tours, know someone at POEA who can fast track their papers.
Applicants will have a free place to stay while their documents are being processed.
Ozhie, the monster, even shared a global perspective: the victims would be able to work in these countries under existing bilateral labor agreements.
Last August 10, the applicants received a text message to proceed to Manila because they will have to make a personal appearance at the POEA. Sam recalled waking up at 4 o’clock in the morning that day, because he didn’t want to be late. The transient house where he and the other applicants were staying was in faraway Cavite.
At 6 o’clock, Sam and Erwin, his fellow butcher-applicant, were at the POEA. The guard said it was too early to let them in. Soon enough, the gates opened. They waited for Ozhie. They waited for Ozhie’s cousin, Alejandro. They waited and waited, and their numbers grew as more of Habilag’s victims went to the POEA. A message came. The “personal appearance” has been reset to August 12. Almost 200 applicants showed up that day. Their recruiters didn’t. The recruiter-monsters have disappeared.
POEA Administrator Hans Leo Cacdac announced last week that Osmando Habilag and Alejandro Navarro are now the subject of a nationwide manhunt. Navarro has several pending warrants of arrest dating back to 2007.
If you know the whereabouts of these monsters, please call the POEA hotline: 722-1144 or 722-1155. Habilag and his cohorts are facing charges of large-scale illegal recruitment, a non-bailable offense under RA 10022. These monsters must pay for what they have done to good people like Sam the butcher, Darla the caregiver, and so many others. If caught, Ozhie will spend his whole life behind bars wishing he could live elsewhere, perhaps in Australia or New Zealand. Or why not in Japan and Germany? Hassle-free, of course.