BI nabs 29 foreign criminals in 2011

THE Bureau of Immigration (BI) arrested a total of 29 foreign fugitives this year as the agency stepped-up its campaign in tracking down and deporting wanted foreign criminals hiding in the country.

Immigration Commissioner Ricardo David Jr. said most of the alien fugitives were already deported and are now serving sentence for serious crimes committed in their homelands.

David said the number of fugitives caught this year is higher than in 2010 when 23 fugitives were arrested.

The expelled aliens were all placed in the bureau’s blacklist of undesirable aliens and are thus banned from re-entering the Philippines, the BI chief added.

All of them were arrested in operations conducted by the bureau’s fugitive search unit (FSU) under the BI intelligence division and on the strength of mission orders issued by the BI chief.

David vowed to pursue without letup the bureau’s campaign against foreign fugitives, saying “these unwanted aliens should not use our country as a refuge.”

Lawyer Maria Antonette Bucasas-Mangrobang, BI acting intelligence chief, attributed the successful campaign to David’s move to reorganize the FSU and assign a new team of operatives whose only task is to run after foreign fugitives.

Mangrobang said the BI has been closely working with the Interpol and police attaches of the different foreign missions in Manila to trace the whereabouts of foreign fugitives believed to be hiding in the Philippines.

Data provided by BI-FSU head Armelo Castro showed that 15 Americans topped the list of the arrested fugitives, followed by six Koreans, three Japanese, a Norwegian, an Australian, a Chinese, a German, and a Taiwanese national.

They were accused of various crimes including child molestation, rape, drug trafficking, swindling, human trafficking, and gun possession, murder, robbery, and financial fraud. Anthony Vargas

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