The Philippines has deported 180 Chinese nationals who were arrested for engaging in online scams targeting their compatriots in mainland China and Taiwan.
The Bureau of Immigration (BI) said on Friday that the deportees boarded a chartered flight at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport in Manila on Thursday night. They were escorted by immigration agents and Chinese police officers.
The BI said the deportees were part of a group of 335 Chinese nationals who were detained in October during a raid on their office in Makati City, where they operated an online investment scam.
The scam involved duping victims into investing in bogus companies and then transferring their money to the scammers’ accounts.
The BI said the deportees were blacklisted and banned from re-entering the Philippines for being undesirable aliens.
The remaining 155 Chinese nationals are still undergoing deportation proceedings, the BI added.
The BI Commissioner Jaime Morente said the deportation was part of the government’s efforts to rid the country of illegal aliens who are involved in criminal activities.
“We will continue to run after these foreign nationals who are illegally staying in our country and send them back to their homelands,” Morente said.
He also warned the public to be wary of online scams and report any suspicious transactions to the authorities.