BI chief Mison, execs face probe over Wang Bo bribe scandal
ALL officials of the Bureau of Immigration (BI) including its chief Siegfred Mison will be subject of an investigation on allegations of bribery to stop the deportation of a Chinese fugitive wanted in his country for a $100-million case of embezzlement, Justice Secretary Leila de Lima said.
“All of the officials of BI whether part of the Board of Commissioners or not will be investigated,” de Lima told reporters Monday.
Mison already denied receiving bribe money.
Mison said he was made to believe by two immigration associate commissioners that Wang Bo, a Chinese fugitive, should not be deported to China since the foreigner has committed the crime in Manila.
The two BI associate commissioners Mison was referring to were Associate Commissioners Abdullah Mangotara and Gilbert Repizo.
The 31-year-old Wang, who is wanted by Interpol and the Chinese government for allegedly embezzling $100 million, was supposed to be released from BI detention but De Lima stopped the order signed by immigration officials.
Wang has been detained at the BI jail in Taguig City since his arrest on Feb. 10 upon his arrival at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport from Malaysia. The Chinese Embassy sought the BI’s assistance in apprehending Wang, saying he was wanted for illegal gambling. His passport had been canceled.
De Lima said she is still pondering whether to allow Wang’s deportation or not in view of the fact-finding probe.
“I’m still trying to determine if it would be wise to deport him given the allegations because if it’s true that Immigration officials received money, the source of the money would be the respondent himself,” de Lima said.
Wang also reportedly provided hundreds of millions of pesos to allegedly bribe lawmakers into approving the administration’s pet legislation, the Bangsamoro Basic Law.
De Lima said her worry was that she might be accused of covering up the bribery issue if she would order Wang’s deportation.
“I myself would like to know what happened….I am inclined to create a team [to conduct the investigation],” de Lima said. AC
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