Filipino-American basketball star Troy Rike is questioning his future in the Philippines after being held by immigration officials for nearly 24 hours.
The 22-year-old, who has joint nationality and a valid Philippine passport, was detained overnight by agents of the Bureau of Immigration who questioned whether he really was a Filipino.
Rike, who grew up in California, was picked up by BI agents after playing for the Filipino National University on September 19.
He said: “It was tough, I’m not gonna lie. I was a bit emotional. I’ve never been arrested before.
“The good thing everyone was very respectful, but at the end of the day I’m being detained against my will for more than 24 hours. You sleep on the floor, you don’t know what’s going on. I’m questioning my whole future here.”
He was released from the BI office in Pasay City the at about 6pm the following day after showing his passport, certificate of recognition as Filipino citizen and birth certificate, he said in an interview with CNN Philippines.
“I don’t think it was justified what they did. I don’t think they do this in general just rounding up Americans, saying show me your papers so I do feel I was singled out and that’s not okay in my opinion,” he added.
BI spokeswoman Dana Sandoval said that there had been a complaint sent to them and they just acted on it. “We act on any report or information we receive from the public,” she added.
She also confirmed that there was no pending case against Troy Rike.
Troy Rike commended after ‘basket brawl’
Rike also hit the headlines in July after he defended Australia’s Chris Goulding during the now-infamous “basket brawl” that broke out during a World Cup qualifying tie at the Philippine Arena.
His act drew praise from Bounty Agro Ventures president Ronald Mascariñas, who awarded him a cheque for 100,000 pesos.
Rike, who is a cadet for the national team, the Gilas, announced that he would divide the cash between a Philippine charity and an Australian one.
After learning of this generous act, Mascariñas matched the player’s donations by donating another 100,000 pesos to the same charities.
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