|NAIA-BI men foil human smuggle try|
JUNE 06, 2012
Immigration officers at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) foiled Tuesday night an attempt by a human smuggling syndicate to smuggle an illegal alien to the US with the arrest of the syndicate’s courier and its female victim.
Bureau of Immigration (BI) Commissioner Ricardo David Jr. identified the alleged courier as Tan Pang Kwang, a Singaporean, and the victim as Lin Xiao Mei, a Chinese woman disguised as a Singaporean.
David said the passengers were intercepted at the boarding gate of the NAIA 2 terminal while they were about to board a Philippine Airlines flight to Los Angeles.
They were barred from leaving after immigration officers found that the Singaporean passport used by Lin is fraudulent.
Lin’s Chinese passport was later found hidden near her private parts upon inspection by the airport’s security personnel during investigation.
The two are now detained at the immigration jail in Bicutan, Taguig pending deportation proceedings.
David commended the members of the bureau’s travel control and enforcement unit (TCEU) at the airport for their vigilance in thwarting the human smuggling operation.
“We have repeatedly warned these syndicates to stop using the Philippines as a transit point for their operation because they cannot elude the watchful eyes of our immigration officers,” the BI chief said.
Atty. Ma. Antonette Mangrobang, BI acting intelligence chief, disclosed that the suspects had just pass the immigration counter and were on their way to the boarding gate when they were accosted by the TCEU members.
Mangrobang said the passengers aroused the immigration officers’ suspicion because of inconsistencies that were noticed in one of their Singaporean passports.
Mangrobang said that the passengers refused to cooperate with investigators during questioning and that Tan was the only one who could speak English.