BI nabs Chinese swindler, S. Korean fraud ring member

By Ferdinand Patinio

November 8, 2023, 4:44 pm

MANILA – Immigration authorities arrested two international fugitives in separate operations in Manila on Tuesday.

In a statement Wednesday, Bureau of Immigration (BI) Commissioner Norman Tansingco said Chinese national Guo Shangming, 45, was arrested in Paco while South Korean national Hyeong Jinwoo, 38, was apprehended in Intramuros.

He said the Chinese national is wanted by the Luoyuan County Public Security Bureau for obtaining loans by fraudulent means. He also applied for and failed to pay his loan worth 259,000 Chinese renminbi (about PHP2 million).

The foreigner was also found to have overstayed in the country as he arrived in the Philippines in 2020.

On the other hand, the South Korean national was arrested for being an undesirable alien during an operation in Manila.

Records from the BI showed that Hyeong was tagged as a fugitive by the Korean government and has outstanding arrest warrants issued by the Suwon District Court for Fraud and Organization of Criminal Groups.

The South Korean national was said to be a member of the MinJun Pa, a voice phishing syndicate based in Metro Manila that illegally operates as a financial institution falsely offering low-interest loans in exchange for upfront payment of outstanding debts and processing fees.

Tansingco noted that Hyeong has been hiding in the Philippines since 2018 and his syndicate has defrauded almost PHP14 million from its victims.

The arrested fugitives' passports were revoked by Chinese and Korean authorities and they are now considered as undocumented and undesirable aliens by the BI.

Meanwhile, the BI has barred the entry of a US national after rude conduct and inputting false and profane information in the eTravel System.

The American, identified as 34-year-old Anthony Joseph Laurence, arrived at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) Terminal 3 via an Air Asia flight from Bangkok, Thailand on Tuesday.

"The passenger initially showed disdain towards the primary inspector after he was reminded to fill out the eTravel online form," Tansingco said in a statement.

The foreigner reportedly tossed his passport and his mobile phone angrily at the immigration officer upon returning.

"After verifying in our system, the officer discovered that the passenger keyed in a made-up address in the Philippines, did not include his full name, and inputted profane words in his entry," he added.

The eTravel System was designed to replace the paper-based arrival and departure cards to streamline and enhance immigration processes at international ports and should be filled out at least 72 hours before arrival.

The American was returned to his port of origin and was placed on the blacklist permanently banning him from re-entering the country. (PNA)