An airport employee, named Manuel, not his real name reveals in detail how his former fellow workers plant bullets in some luggage of the airport. His motive for revealing the tactics of the scammers it is because he felt pity to the victims.
He says their small salary is the reason for extorting money, and they usually target passengers who look rich. He even demonstrated how the bullets are planted. A bullet is placed between screener’s fingers, it only take seconds for a .22 bullet be easily drop inside the bag. “The amount of money that victims give ranges from P1,000 to as much as P50,000. The one who commits the act has a bigger share. For example, In dividing the P30,000, 10% for the screening officer and investigators get a bigger cut. “, He said. “There is no syndicate inside the airport. Individuals who are courageous enough commit the crime.” , He added.
Some bullet victims are speaking out including U.S based caregiver Rhed de Guzman who even went to the Philippine consulate to submit her sworn statement about her experienced at the NAIA. And also American missionary Lane Michael White, who is also a victim came out and shared his bad experience. “I can feel like I’m betrayed, We came here to help the people and they did this to us, it doesn’t seem fair.”, He said. It is his first time to go in the Philippines with his family for them to look for a place to build a church for their Christian Ministry but unfortunately it caused them a traumatic experience. They even sold everything that they had in order to support the ministry.
Manuel is hopeful more victims would come out and share their experience with the authorities so that scammers will be caught.
Sen. Ralph Recto will file a resolution seeking an investigation of abuses committed by NAIA employees against tourists and balikbayans. Recto said bullet planting is punishable by life imprisonment under Section 38 of Republic Act 10591.
“The law says that if you are a public official and you plant a bullet on the person or property of an individual for the purpose of framing him up, you will go to jail for life. It only takes a bullet and you will be spending the rest of your life behind bars,” he said.
Recto said the airport personnel who planted a bullet in the bags of an American missionary and a balikbayan should be punished if proven that they committed the crime.
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