THE Bureau of Immigration (BI) has ordered the investigation of the alleged involvement of Indians in the illegal drug trade.
Immigration Commissioner Jaime Morente said that he instructed the chief of Intelligence Division to send a team of BI operatives to provinces where police arrested foreigners for selling drugs.
“We are alarmed over these reports of Indians allegedly engaged in the illegal drug business. Aliens engaged in such nefarious activities should be apprehended and punished for violating our laws,” Morente said.
In compliance with Morente’s directive, a team of BI operatives was sent to Iloilo to investigate and conduct follow-up operations on the arrest of three Indians by the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA).
BI Intelligence Officer Jude Hinolan identified the three Indians as Amandeep Tangri, Joginder Pal Tangri and Tehal Singh.
Hinolan said the three have been illegally staying in the country as their visas have expired.
Morente said the Indians were under the custody of PDEA and would be charged with violating Immigration laws but stressed that they would not be deported until they have served their sentences if convicted by the courts.
The bureau also said that in the operation conducted jointly by the BI with the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) and Region 7 Provincial Police Office, 31 Indians were invited for verification of their immigration status. ASHLEY JOSE