The Bureau of Immigration (BI) announced the arrest of more than 500 aliens in a raid of an illegal Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) company in Pasay City.
According to BI Commissioner Jaime Morente, a total of 542 aliens were arrested yesterday evening, October 9 at the Millenium Building through the joint intelligence operations of the BI, the Philippine National Police National Capital Region Police Office (PNP NCRPO), and the Armed Forces of the Philippines in coordination with the Chinese Embassy.
The arrested aliens were mostly male and made up of 442 Chinese, 23 Vietnamese, 25 Malaysians, 3 Indonesians, 45 Burmese, and 4 Taiwanese.
“They were arrested for working without permit and for being undocumented aliens,” said Morente.
Fortunato Manahan, Jr., Chief of the BI Intelligence Division revealed details of the operations. “The foreigners were involved in some sort of telecommunications fraud, similar to budol-budol,” he shared. “But their victims are mostly from mainland China,” he added.
Meanwhile, Morente clarified the role of the BI in arresting aliens. “If the alien committed a criminal act, it is under the jurisdiction of the local authorities,” said Morente. “But if we see that there is an immigration violation, we may charge for deportation separately,” he added.
The clarification was given by Morente following questions on the role of BI in arresting foreign nationals. He likewise discussed the procedure of deportation. “It is within our policy not to implement deportation unless local cases are cleared already. If the alien needs to serve time in our local jails then so be it, this is to ensure the full effect of justice,” he shared.
Morente then reiterated his warning to erring foreign nationals. “We welcome foreigners to visit the Philippines—work here, live here, study here, retire here, we welcome aliens as long as they comply with our laws,” he said. “Follow our laws or face deportation,” he warned.
The aliens are currently detained with the NCRPO in Bicutan, Taguig. Bureau of Immigration