The Bureau of Immigration (BI) has warned the public to be wary of scammers posing as immigration employees on Facebook, who were able to victimize a foreigner and asked for a certain amount.
Immigration Commissioner Jaime Morente said an Indian student filed a complaint before the bureau regarding a fake lawyer posing as an immigration hearing officer.
“We conducted an investigation and saw that there were many similar complaints in the past about this fake lawyer who introduced herself as a certain Atty. Lisa Perez Tubban. She presented herself as a fixer than can process the application of these students,” he said.
BI records showed there was no such person employed by the agency.
“We suspect she’s using a fake name, as she used the photo of one of our contractual employees as her profile picture,” Morente said.
The victim, a female student in the country, started conversing with the suspect in February, following a disagreement with her school.
According to the BI, current rules authorize only school representatives to process applications on behalf of the students.
Because of the disagreement, the victim turned to Facebook to look for someone who could help her.
“The fake employee offered to process her application but requested pre-payment sent through online fund transfer. The complaint stated that the victim paid a total of P45,000 in several tranches before the suspect stopped replying to her,” he said. Vito Barcelo
The incident prompted Morente to warn foreign students not to deal with individuals posing as BI employees online.
“These are all scams. Immediately report to the authorities if you encounter any such attempts,” warned Morente.
Earlier, the BI posted a warning against fake immigration officers promising to escort travelers at the airport.