Sun. Aug 1st, 2021

The Bureau of Immigration (BI) has arrest of three of South Korea’s most wanted fugitives who were tagged as leaders of a big-time syndicate engaged in online scamming that victimized thousands of their compatriots.

(Photo Courtesy: Manila Bulletin)

Immigration Commissioner Jaime Morente said the three were arrested on Tuesday in operations conducted in Parañaque City and Pantabangan, Nueva Ecija by operatives from the BI’s fugitive search unit (FSU) in coordination with the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group Major Crimes Investigation Unit (CIDG-MCIU).

They were identified as Jung Myunghun, 38, allegedly the syndicate’s top leader; Yu Daewoong, 38, and Kang Wesung, 36, also a leaders of the group.

Morente described the three Koreans as high profile fugitives long sought by South Korean authorities and the Interpol.

According to BI FSU Chief Bobby Raquepo, Korean authorities sought the assistance of BI in locating and arresting the trio.

Criminal records show that since July 2014, the suspects perpetrated an online scam by uploading and advertising items on online second-hand markets, duping victims into purchasing products that turned out to be non-existent.

Korean authorities uncovered thousands of cases — almost 2,600 — wherein victims have been defrauded by the suspects. It is estimated that victims incurred a combined loss of more than 10 billion won, or close to US$9 million, from the syndicate’s racket.

It was learned that the warrants for the suspects’ arrest were issued in August last year by the Jeju district court in Korea. If convicted, they could be sentenced to maximum jail term of 30 years for violating their country’s law against economic crimes.

Their passports have likewise been revoked by Korean authorities, making them undocumented aliens.

“They will be deported to face the cases against them in Korea, and their names shall likewise remain in our blacklist, which effectively bans their re-entry in the country,” the BI chief said.

All three Koreans are temporarily detained at the CIDG headquarters pending results of their swab tests for the coronavirus disease 2019. SOVEREIGNPH

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