Manila Mayor Francisco “Isko Moreno” Domagoso on Saturday cautioned against the operation of a syndicate offering fake express swab tests for the coronavirus in exchange for a fee to victimize those who need the test results so they can go back to their provinces.
Domagoso made the warning after the Special Mayor’s Reaction Team (SMART) headed by Lt. Col. Jhun Ibay presented two suspects, a man and a woman, said to be working as cohorts victimizing Badjaos who want to leave Metro Manila and go back to their province.
Domagoso learned that the male suspect was the one who delivers to the woman the prospective victims, who said they are being asked to pay P1,000 each.
Police recovered from the suspects at least a hundred papers containing fake swab test results.
The duo claimed they were merely helping the victims and that they did not ask for money.
The mayor pointed out that in the first place, the certification for the swab tests is supposed to be signed and not merely printed out.
Investigation further showed that the victims were being kept by the female suspect in a compound where they pay rent of up to P1,500 each while waiting for their documents to be given to them so they can already go back home.
The mayor admonished the two, whom he said can afford to use the present COVID situation as a way to make easy money.