SUBIC BAY FREEPORT—At least 30 undocumented Taiwanese allegedly involved in extortion activities using computers and the Internet were arrested on Tuesday in a joint operation of the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) and the Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA) law enforcement department (LED).
SBMA Chair Roberto Garcia confirmed that the NBI led an operation in Forest View, one of the residential areas in Binictican here.
Garcia was awaiting the final report on the raid but said that the Taiwanese were involved in a “cybercrime.” He did not provide details.
Orlando Maddela, SBMA LED chief, said the Taiwanese were in the custody of the NBI.
An NBI source, who asked not to be identified for lack of authority to speak on the operation, said the Taiwanese were “involved in extortion, with targets in China and Taiwan.”
Asked to describe the operation, the source said they were able to hack into databases in those countries and find out which companies had cases and were about to be investigated by authorities there.
“Then they’ll call up these companies, inform the executives of the pending cases, and ask them to call the authorities to confirm this. But the number they give is, of course, one of their own. That’s how they were able to extort money from their victims,” the source said.
The group moved around at the Subic and Clark free ports, the source said, adding that “when we took them in, they could not show any documents. They didn’t have passports.”
The raiding team confiscated various gadgets, computers, laptops and mobile phones from the Taiwanese. Robert Gonzaga, Inquirer Central Luzon