BI foils entry of Belgian 'terrorist', companion into PH

By Ferdinand Patinio

February 12, 2024, 4:36 pm

<p><em>(File photo)</em></p>

(File photo)

MANILA – Immigration authorities prevented a Belgian national who is a suspected terrorist and his companion from entering the country via the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA).

In a statement Monday, Bureau of Immigration (BI) Commissioner Norman Tansingco said the man, whose name was withheld due to security reasons and his 27-year-old female companion, arrived in the country from Abu Dhabi on Feb. 7.

The Belgian man was refused entry at the NAIA Terminal 3 for being an undesirable alien while his companion was also turned back for accompanying an undesirable alien.

Tansingco said the man was excluded after the BI officer who processed him saw that the passenger prompted a hit in his computer’s International Criminal Police Organization (Interpol) derogatory check system.

Verification made with the BI’s Interpol unit revealed that the Belgian is subject of a diffusion notice issued by the Interpol for the alleged offense of involvement in terrorism-related crime.

The Belgian was excluded pursuant to Sec. 29 of the Philippine Immigration Act which forbids the entry of “any alien who believes in, advises, advocates, or teaches the overthrow by force and violence of constituted law authority.”

Upon exclusion, the suspect’s name was included in the BI’s blacklist, effectively barring him from re-entering the country.

Meanwhile, the BI also barred four more foreign sex offenders from the United States in recent days at the NAIA.

The first passenger to be intercepted was Herbert Nelson Price, 63, who was denied entry at the NAIA Terminal 1 on Feb. 7, after arriving aboard a Philippine Airlines flight from Los Angeles.

Information received from the US government showed that Price was convicted by a court in Wisconsin for sexual battery of a 21-year-old woman.

Also on Feb. 7, 68-year-old Thomas Dewey Wise was intercepted at the NAIA Terminal 3 upon his arrival via a Cathay Pacific flight from Hong Kong.

A North Carolina court reportedly convicted Wise in 1997 for indecent liberties or committing lewd or immoral acts on a child who is under 16 years of age.

On Feb. 8, BI officers at the NAIA 1 excluded Keith Knight Bonzon, 65, who arrived aboard a Korean Airlines flight from Incheon, South Korea.

Bonzon was convicted by a US court for sexually assaulting a 23-year-old woman after intruding into her home.

On Feb. 10, John Kenneth Wilsher, 60, was excluded after also arriving from Incheon on board a Korean airlines flight.

He was convicted in 1988 of criminal sexual conduct in the first degree in the state of Michigan.

All of them boarded the next available flight back to their country of origin and have been included in the BI’s roster of blacklisted aliens.

Earlier, Tansingco reported that BI port personnel denied the entry of 171 foreign sex offenders in 2023, all of whom were blacklisted and banned from entering the country. (PNA)