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PH embassy execs in Kuwait face trafficking raps

MANILA, Philippines—A task force of the Department of Justice has recommended a preliminary investigation and the subsequent filing of charges of human trafficking and illegal recruitment against 12 people, including officials at the Philippine embassy in Kuwait.

The Kuwait antitrafficking task force led by Assistant City Prosecutor Darlene Pajarito submitted last month its report to Justice Secretary Leila De Lima after a three-month-long investigation.

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Twenty-nine women had initially complained against the embassy officials and their recruiters but in the end only 15 decided to pursue action against them. Their complaints ranged from their agencies requiring them to work for long hours; maltreatment from their employers; while one complained she was sexually abused by her employer and his son.

Recommended to be charged for violating two counts of the Anti-Trafficking in Persons Act of 2003, as well as the Migrant Workers’ Act and Expanded Anti-Trafficking In Persons Act of 2012 was Ibrahim Daligdig Tanandato, Assistant to Nationals unit head in the embassy.

Also recommended to be charged were Muamar Mamosion, an Arabic translator at the embassy; Omar Khalil, visa 18 case officer and embassy lawyers Khaled Almas and Ayied Al Subaie, and recruiters Wilfredo Palomar Jr., Mariam Macapudi and Dolores Suarez.

The task force also forwarded to the Office of the Prosecutor of the City of Manila criminal cases for syndicated illegal recruitment were Amor Decepeda and Regina Padiernos, employees of Ascend International Service in Manila; Nora Pilpa Sevillano, a Tacloban-based employee of the recruitment firm; and Leojane Tacang, secretary of Suad Alderbas Manpower Recruitment Office, counterpart agency of Ascend.

The task force also recommended that the Department of Foreign Affairs and the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration look into the abuses allegedly committed by the Kuwaiti or other foreign employers/nationals.

“And after conducting the necessary investigation, to study the possibility of permanently blacklisting them from employing overseas Filipino workers, or representing them in legal cases,” the task force said.

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TAGS: Human trafficking, Illegal recruitment, Kuwait, Philippines
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