It appears that the Bureau of Immigration (BI) is apprehending and deporting undocumented and undesirable aliens in record numbers this year.
On Thursday, BI agents swooped down on a shopping mall in Baclaran, Parañaque City, in an “intensified drive” against the proliferation of smuggled alien workers.
At least 32 of 46 foreigners remain in custody at the BI detention facility in Bicutan, Taguig City (Metro Manila) , including 29 Chinese, two Bangladeshis and one Pakistani.
The 14 Chinese released include nine with verified legal immigration status, three minors, a senior citizen and one pregnant woman.
BI spokesman andlawyer Elaine Tan said the BI intelligence division operatives headed by lawyer Carlitos Licas raided the Bagong Millenium Plaza in Baclaran following reports that the store chain has become a haven for illegal alien workers.
Actually, hordes of undocumented aliens, mostly Chinese “TNTs” (tago-nang-tago), were frequently hauled to BI during the bureau’s previous administrations.
My insider asset at BI, however, said the intelligence operations were kept from the media, as most of those apprehended were released instead of being deported.
It is a no-brainer why illegal aliens smuggled from China ended up staying and consequently had their immigration cases “fixed.”
Before the word “hulidap” became a buzzword, it had been long a modus operandi of racketeers at the BI.
“Busloads of foreigners were brought [to]the BI offices, usually late in the day but they would be gone the following morning. It’s like now you see them, now you don’t,” my asset said.
A favorite milking cow of scumbags at BI were store chains at Divisoria, as well as Baclaran. But such ceased to be the trend since Immigration informant Commissioner Siegfred Mison implemented the “Bad Guys Out, Good Guys In.”
Mison issued a stern warning to his own men against releasing any alien in custody under questionable circumstances.
He assured that those subjects to deportation proceedings would be accorded their right to due process.
Any foreigner who secures employment without the required pre-arranged employment visa from BI or employment permit from the Department of Labor and Employment is in violation of Sections 9 and 37 of the Philippine Immigration Law.
The BI and other law-enforcement agencies rounded up over 200 undocumented aliens in the past several weeks for working at online gambling casinos without any employment permit.
But a disturbing trend surfaced with these alien apprehensions.
Quite a number of these alien workers showed a “work visa” from the Cagayan Economic Zone Authority (CEZA).
Apparently, more and more Chinese trafficked into the country, who have secured the CEZA work visa, end up working at online casinos outside CEZA jurisdictions.
We sought CEZA administrator and chief executive officer Jose Mari “Chelly” Ponce for explanation but our efforts to get his side of the story have been unsuccessful again.
Notorious fugitive Wang Bo, a wanted illegal gambling lord and money launderer in China, had repeatedly stayed in the country using a CEZA work visa despite being blacklisted by BI.
Wang, who has been deported on orders of Commissioner Mison, belonged to a gambling mafia on online gaming called Avia Group.
Following the Wang Bo case, BI agents hauled nearly 200 alien employees at an online casino hub, Zhong Hwa Enterprises Co. at Star Cruise Centre at Newport Village, Pasay City.
At least 155 people turned out to be undocumented Chinese reportedly “smuggled” into the country while 35 of them were recipients of the CEZA visa.
Last week, a joint team of National Bureau of Investigation and the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (NBI-CIDG) raided the online gambling joint, the Xing Qui Ba Inc. at RCBC at Buendia and Ayala avenues in Makati City.
Online gambling operations in the country have become a lucrative market for human smugglers. They cater to an international market including China, Hong Kong, Singapore, Taiwan and Malaysia.
This is another reason why they employ primarily Chinese speaking “call center agents.”
With CEZA’s help, even blacklisted undesirable aliens like gambling lord Clayton Edward Ayre found their way back into the country.
How long has CEZA under Chelly Ponce been getting away with this irregularity with impunity?
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