Bureau of Immigration (BI) Commissioner Norman Tansingco lauded its Anti-Terrorist Group (ATG) for its role in the successful interdiction of two drug smugglers last September 27.
In a report to Tansingco, ATG Airport Head Bienvenido Castillo III shared that the mother-duo tandem identified as Siti Aishah Binte Awang and Nur Alaviyah Binte Hanaffe, Singaporeans, were intercepted after arriving on board a Qatar airlines flight from Doha.
The two attempted to transit to Hong Kong via the Philippines, when immigration authorities intercepted them after detecting suspicious travel patterns.
“We received information about a suspect from international counterparts, and we observed that she would come in and out of the country in several instances and have noted suspicious travels,” said Castillo. “We discovered another individual with the exact same patterns, hence we immediately coordinated the matter with the members of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport Drug Interdiction Task Group (NAIA-DITG),” he added.
After alerting the task group, members from the Bureau of Customs (BOC) and Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) sprang into action, assisted by airline representatives.
Canine inspection showed that the duo’s luggage contained suspicious materials. Checks by the BOC confirmed that their bags contained six cookie tin cans and five cylindrical chip cans containing 564 pellets with white powdered substance.
Mother-daughter drug smugglers arrested – BI
The substance, identified as cocaine, totaled more or less 14,360 grams with a current street value of Php 76,108,000.00.
Tansingco hailed the arrest and commended the BI-ATG for the alert and proactive actions that led to the interdiction.
“The alertness of our immigration personnel in analyzing travel patterns of these criminals was instrumental in this arrest,” said Tansingco. “Close coordination among government agencies in our airports is necessary to protect our borders from all kinds of criminal activity,” he added.
Both suspects were arrested by the PDEA, and remains under the agency’s custody for filing of the appropriate charges against them.
Meanwhile, BI has confirmed the deportation of 75 foreign nationals last September 22.
BI Commissioner Norman Tansingco shared that the 75 foreign nationals, made up of Chinese nationals, departed via the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) Terminal 1, afternoon of Friday on board a royal air flight to Nanning, Guangxi.