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BI urges probe vs airline employee allegedly involved in trafficking

The Bureau of Immigration urged Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) officials to investigate an airline employee's possible involvement in the trafficking and illegal recruitment of passengers.

In a statement released Monday, Immigration Commissioner Norman Tansingco said the BI issued the appeal after immigration officers intercepted a woman with a fake stamp at the NAIA Terminal 3 on April 5.

The passenger was supposed to fly to Kuala Lumpur en route to the United Arab Emirates where she was to work as a domestic.

During questioning, the passenger said an airline employee and the employee’s former office mate assisted her in lining up at the departure counter.

The passenger was told to fall in line after her handler handed her a passport and boarding pass that already had fake departure stamps.

The BI’s document forensic laboratory later confirmed that the stamp was counterfeit.

"It’s a good thing po that our immigration personnel were very alert at nakita po at dinouble check ang kanyang passport and they saw the fake immigration stamp doon po na naka imprint sa kanyang pasaporte," said BI Spokesperson Dana Sandoval in Ian Cruz's Monday "24 Oras" report.

According to an investigation, the passenger had been recruited online.

"Mayroon po siyang mga binayaran na na meet nya online na naipakilala din po sa kanya ng other people," said Sandoval "Pagdating niya po sa paliparan may naghihintay na po sa kanya na maga-assist daw po sa kanya. Yun nga po ang airline employee."

(The passenger had paid this this person who was introduced to her online. She was told that when she got to the airport there would be someone there who would assist her - that turned out to be the airline employee.)

Meanwhile, Tansingco declined to name the airline and the employee involved, saying the matter had been referred to the NAIA.

Nevertheless, the airline employee's airport pass was suspended and the Interagency Task Force Against Trafficking was looking into how the employee would be punished under the law. — DVM, GMA Integrated News