CIDG nabs illegal recruiter

ELEMENTS of the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) arrested a 31-year-old illegal recruiter during an entrapment operation at the food court of Shagrila Plaza mall in Mandaluyong on Friday afternoon.

CIDG director, Chief Supt. Samuel Pagdilao, Jr. identified the arrested illegal recruiter as Joseph John Guillermo, a native of Laoag, Ilocos Norte and residing at Calixto Dyco St., in Paco, Manila.

Pagdilao said Guilermo, who was nabbed by Anti-Organized Crime Division (AOCD), was arrested based on a complaint filed by a certain Evangeline Esmeralda, 36, a former overseas Filipino worker (OFW) from Villasis, Pangasinan.

CIDG-AOCD chief, Senior Supt. Ronald Estilles, said the victim was promised by the suspect with a job in Spain but after a year and despite of paying the amount of P600,000, the promised job abroad never materialized.

Esmeralda told investigators that sometime in January last year while she was at Cyprus working as an OFW, she knew Guillermo through her uncle Demmy, who was in Spain.

Esmeralda said she called Guillermo through his mobile phone and asked if he could help her go to Spain and the suspect assured and promised her that he can process and facilitate all the documents and papers for her visa.

On March 2010 the suspect told the victim that she has to come back home to the Philippines so that she can go along with the batch of workers that are leaving for Spain on second week of May 2010.

On April 5, 2010 Esmeralda went back to the Philippines from Cyprus and upon arrival in Manila she was met by Guillermo. There, the suspect took the victim’s passport and four pieces of 2X2 ID pictures that according to the suspect will be used for her resume.

The suspect also asked the victim to give the former cash money amounting to P300,000 allegedly for the initial payment for the processing of the victim’s visa, but she said that at that time she had no cash.

Instead, Guillermo gave his bank account number to the victim and told her to send the money to the said account. The next day the victim deposited the money to the bank account of the suspect amounting to P100,000 through an ATM in Carmen, Pangasinan.

Later on, the suspect told the victim that the total amount of the processing fee for a job in Spain was around P600,000, but Esmeralda told Guillermo instead that she will first give the down payment and the remaining balance will be given upon the release of the visa.

After three days, Guillermo again called Esmeralda asking for additional money for the processing of her papers. On April 14 the victim sent Guillermo money via BPI Uradaneta, Pangasinan Branch amounting to P200,000. After a few days, the suspect told the victim through text messages that that he already received the money.

It was then that the suspect promised the victim that he will contact Esmeralda the moment the Spanish Embassy in Manila has approved her schedule for interview.

Esmeralda said that more than a year have passed since the money was given to Guillermo, no interview at the Embassy happened. It was then that she decided to demand the suspect to return the money instead.

On May 31, Guillermo texted her that he will return the passport, but he wants the complainant to give him additional money amounting to P10 thousand again for passport and visa processing, but this time the victim sought police help.

On late Friday afternoon, June 3, CIDG operatives led by Chief Insp. Ray Cuanico and Senior Insp. Melencio Mina conducted an entrapment operation at the Shangrila Plaza, Food Court that resulted to the arrest of the suspect. Anthony Vargas

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