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Philippines Authorities Raids POGO Compound, Seize Assets

April 11, 2024 Philippines Crime & Legal

Investigating a busted POGO (Philippine Offshore Gaming Operator) complex in Tarlac, the Philippine authorities made great progress. Of the 27 vaults located on the premises, 11 were discovered by police after the operation that took place last month and resulted in the rescue of 868 POGO personnel. Nine villas, 46 cars, five motorcycles, heavy machinery, and Php5.5 million (US$97,500) in cash were also taken.

The Presidential Anti-Organized Crime Commission (PAOCC) and the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group worked together to conduct the raid, which was made possible by search warrants obtained by the court for suspected cases of major illegal detention and human trafficking.

Lucas Bersamin, the Executive Director, has acted decisively, directing the Anti-Money Laundering Council to freeze and protect the entire compound. Red packets, documentation, and Chinese passports were found inside the unlocked vaults.

While investigations are ongoing, 499 foreign workers who were rescued are being prepared for deportation, and eight people—five Chinese, two Vietnamese, and one Malaysian—are accused of human trafficking and unlawful detention.

In a related matter, potential connections between local government representatives and the POGO operation are being investigated by the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG). The seized facility’s operator, Zun Yuan Technology Inc., may have connections to Bamban, Tarlac, Mayor Alice Guo.

Guo has vehemently denied any involvement in illegal conduct and stated that he would be happy to assist with any investigation. She restates her dedication to upholding the rule of law and the presumption of innocence pending conviction.

The government’s steadfast dedication to stopping human trafficking and illegal gaming operations while maintaining due process and accountability is demonstrated by the ongoing inquiry.

Original Story by: Inside Asian Gaming

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