Mison clarifies BI cannot prevent a person from leaving the country even if he or she is under the bureau's lookout list

March 6, 2014 11:20 am 

By Ferdinand G. Patinio

MANILA, March 5 (PNA) — The Bureau of Immigration (BI) on Wednesday clarified that they cannot prevent a person from leaving the country even if he or she is under the bureau’s lookout list.

“We only aim to monitor the person’s whereabouts and the details of the travel pending the resolution of the ongoing investigation,” said BI Commissioner Siegfred Mison in a statement.

He issued the statement after it was reported that Ruby Tuason, the potential witness in the multi-billion pork barrel scam left the country last March 2 for Hong Kong.

However, her travel document revealed that she will return to the country on April 5.

He added that Tuason’s travel detail including the date of return in the country was recorded for monitoring purposes.

Mison noted that the lookout bulletin order which was approved by Justice Secretary Leila de Lima in September, 2013 against the 35 individuals charged before the Office of the Ombudsman in connection with the P10-billion pork barrel scam, is still in effect up to this date.

The respondents in the pork barrel scam including the alleged mastermind Janet Lim-Napoles, Tuason and Sen. Juan Ponce Enrile’s secretary Ms. Gigi Reyes are still subjects of the lookout bulletin until this month of February,” the immigration chief said.

Mison explained that the lookout order is not a hold departure order as its purpose is only to alert concerned agencies that a person in the list is about to leave the country.

Among those in the lookout list were former congressmen Rizalina Seachon-Lanete (Masbate), Rep. Edgar Valdez (Apec Party List), Rodolfo Plaza (Agusan del Sur), Samuel Dangwa (Benguet), and Constantino Jaraula (Cagayan de Oro).

Also included in the list are lawyer Richard Cambe, Pauline Labayen, Jose Sumalpong, Jeanette dela Cruz, Carlos Lozada, Erwin Dangwa, Alan Javellana, Gondelina Amata, Antonio Ortiz, Dennis Cunanan, Salvador Salacup.

Those who are in the list are Jocelyn Piorato, Pablo Nemesio, Mylene Encarnacion, John Raymund de Asis, Evelyn de Leon, Ronald John Lim, Victor Cacal, Romulo Revelo, Ma. Ninez Guanizo, Julie Johnson, Rhodora Mendoza, Alexis Sevidal, Sofia Cruz, Chila Jalandoni, Francisco Figura, and Marivic Jover.

He added that all the names of the accused are still encoded in the bureau’s database. (PNA)

CTB/FGP/UTB

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