Four Chinese nationals have been arrested by the Bureau of Immigration (BI) for buying assets, avoiding inspection, and meddling in politics. The arrest took place in Palawan on March 19, 2024, but the BI only announced it on Monday, April 1, 2024.

The arrested foreigners are Lyu Zhiyang, Wang Tao, Li Xiaoming, and Guo Zhi Yang, who are allegedly involved in the illegal acquisition of government-issued identification cards and official documents.

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The BI responded to the call of Surigao del Norte 2nd District Representative Robert Ace Barbers to apprehend individuals involved in providing foreigners with fraudulent government-issued identification cards and documents.

The combined forces of the BI Intelligence Division, Naval Forces West, National Intelligence Coordinating Agency 4B, and the Armed Forces of the Philippines successfully arrested the four Chinese nationals in Barangay San Pedro, Puerto Princesa City.

"The arresting team of the operation have been working on the case for several months and have kept close coordination with intelligence forces and law enforcement agents to ensure the smooth arrest of the subjects," says BI Intelligence Division Chief Fortunato Manahan, Jr.

Several driver's licenses, postal IDs, and birth certificates illegally obtained by the Chinese were recovered in the operation. It was discovered that Lyu, who bore the alias Ken Garcia Lee, was allegedly the ringleader of the syndicate illegally obtaining government-issued documents.

"Lyu, who bore the alias Ken Garcia Lee, was allegedly the mastermind of the operation and earned notoriety in the local community after being tagged as the fraud mafia leader in Palawan. The arrest of Lyu and his gang will definitely hurt the operations of these entities, and hopefully put a stop to the proliferation of fraudulently-acquired documents," said Immigration Commissioner Norman Tansingco.

The four Chinese nationals are now detained at the BI Detention Facility in Camp Bagong Diwa Taguig City.

They are facing cases of misrepresentation and undesirability for violating the Philippine Immigration Act of 1940.

(Photo from the Bureau of Immigration)