BI intercepts 3 Laos-bound trafficking victims at NAIA

Manila, Philippines – Bureau of Immigration (BI) Officers at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport have intercepted three more suspected victims of human trafficking, who attempted to leave the country in the guise of being tourists.

In a statement, Immigration Commissioner Norman Tansingco said the passengers were barred from leaving last Friday, before they could board an Air Asia flight to Bangkok, Thailand at the NAIA 3 Terminal.

“There will be no letup in our campaign against human trafficking. We are sending a strong notice to these syndicates that we have doubled our vigilance in seeing to it that our poor kababayans do not fall prey to their activities,” the BI Chief stressed.

He added that the three later admitted that their final destination is Vientianne, Laos where they were allegedly hired to work as customer service representatives for a company and promised salaries of between P30,000 to P40,000 a month.

“The modus operandi employed here by the syndicate is for their victims who were disguised as tourists to initially fly to Thailand, where they would later board a connecting flight to Laos,” Tangsinco said.

The passengers’ names were not divulged given that the law prohibits the public disclosure of human trafficking victims.

BI Travel Control and Enforcement Unit (TCEU) head Ann Camille Mina said the victims gave inconsistent statements during interview, and presented fake employment documents.

This is to make it appear that they are gainfully employed in the country.

They confessed that their supposed documents were only handed over to them at the airport hours earlier.

The victims were later turned over to the Inter-Agency Council Against Trafficking (IACAT) for investigation and filing of charges against their recruiters.