Almost half of the foreign fugitives arrested in the Philippines last year were from China, the Bureau of Immigration (BI) has reported.
Out of 257 foreign fugitives, the BI said today (Thursday, Juanuary 17) that 116 were Chinese, followed by 80 Taiwanese, 27 Koreans, 16 Thais, eight Americans, five Britons, a Dutchman, a Swede, a Japanese, a German and a Norwegian.
As we also reported this week, the Chinese also topped the list of 133 foreigners barred from entering the country for being rude to airport immigration staff.
BI Commissioner Jaime Morente said the number of fugitives this year was higher than last year’s record number of 232.
BI statistics show that 98 of those arrested were wanted for fraud and economic crimes, 98 for telecom fraud, 44 for cybercrime, seven for sex offences, five for kidnapping, one for robbery extortion, one for gun possession and drug distribution, and one for smuggling.
“It is evident that the focus of our campaign last year was the neutralisation of organised syndicates involved in cyber crimes and cyber fraud,” said BI intelligence officer Bobby Raquepo.
Commissioner Morente said most of the fugitives were deported and served their sentences after trial and conviction in their home countries.
“All of them were also placed in our blacklist of undesirable aliens to make sure that they do not return and pose threat to our public safety and security,” he added.
Some notable foreign fugitives
Among the high-profile cases of 2018 was the arrest of American priest Father Kenneth Hendricks in December. The 77-year-old was wanted for alleged child abuse in his home country. However, he was also accused of molesting altar boys in his adopted home of Naval, Biliran. It is not clear whether he has yet been deported or remains at the BI’s Bicutan detention centre.
Also deported was American-Israeli Oren Shlomo Mayer. He had become Taiwan’s most wanted man after allegedly murdering a Canadian teacher. The body of 43-year-old Sanjay Ryan Ramgahan was found dismembered and dumped in a Taipei river.
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