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Wednesday, December 14, 2011

DOJ clears 5 POEA execs of human trafficking raps

The Department of Justice (DOJ) junked human trafficking charges against five officers of the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA).

In a 15-page decision, the DOJ said the evidence failed to prove the charges against POEA officers Alejandro Padaem, Jesus Gabriel Domingo, Marieta de la Cruz, Ernesto Vistro and Nascel Gabito.

Former POEA officer Stephen Cascolan accused his five former co-workers of conspiring with three recruitment agencies to illegally deploy 100 overseas Filipino workers, some of whom sought repatriation. According to Cascolan, the five POEA committed fraud when they included the agencies in the list of those with “good standing” despite an order canceling their licenses.

He also claimed that the delay in the implementation of the cancellation order caused undue harm to the OFWs, some of whom suffered abuses and sought immediate repatriation.

The DOJ said the evidence presented failed to prove that the accused intentionally delayed the implementation of the cancellation order to the three recruitment agencies.

“The complaint must show that the delay was intentional and intended to promote human trafficking, but evidence did not show it was intentional,” the DOJ pointed out.

In the absence of a declaration from the OFWs, the DOJ said the allegation appeared to be hearsay.

source: Philippine Star

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