BI IDs Malta a hotspot for human trafficking


THE Bureau of Immigration (BI) branded Malta as one of the hotspots for human trafficking after it recently intercepted two victims of such illegal activity who were bound for the said country last April 29.

BI Commissioner Norman Tansingco said last Sunday that the victims have been turned over to the Inter-Agency Council Against Trafficking (Iacat) for further investigation and filing of appropriate charges against their recruiters.

Based on the initial investigation, the passengers told immigration officers at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (Naia) Terminal 2 that they were friends and travelling to Malta for a four-day vacation.

The victims even showed records of local employment at dental clinics in the country to prove that they would return to the country.

The victims, however, were unaware that their employment visas to Malta were already cancelled even before leaving the country.

They added that they were instructed by their recruiter to wait for the rest of their travel documents upon reaching Bangkok.

“Both women later admitted during secondary inspection that their final destination is Malta and that their documents were only handed to them by an unknown person that same morning outside the airport,” Tansingso said.

Due to this incident, the BI chief called on the public to be more cautious in dealing with recruiters, noting several investigations have shown exploitation of domestic and foreign victims in the Mediterranean.

“The BI understands being enticed by greener pastures abroad, but by not going through the correct process, aspiring migrant workers risk getting abused overseas,” Tansingso said.

Image credits: Hyotographics |