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NAIA (Philippines): Excuse me, we found bullets in your bag

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Joined: 05 Nov 2010
Location: Kyungbuk

PostPosted: Sun Sep 27, 2015 12:51 am    Post subject: NAIA (Philippines): Excuse me, we found bullets in your bag Reply with quote

Listen up yo.
You may want to either put some serious locks on your luggage when traveling to the Philippines or better yet just fond another (safer) location to chill. This story is a heads up for all those thinking it's more fun in the Philippines.

MANILA, Philippines - Sen. Ralph Recto yesterday called for an investigation of abuses allegedly being committed by Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) personnel against tourists and balikbayans.

Recto made the call following reports of NAIA personnel planting bullets in the bags of travelers during customs inspections in order to extort money from them.

The victims would be threatened with a stint in jail unless they pay.

Recto said this modus operandi is a serious offense that could land the airport employees involved in prison for life.

“The 2013 firearms law says that if you are a public official and you plant a bullet on the person or property of an individual for the purpose of framing him, you go to jail for life,” Recto said.

He said this punishment should be imposed on the airport personnel who put a bullet in the bags of an American missionary and a balikbayan if it is proven that they indeed committed the crime.

While authorities are conducting their investigation, Recto said he will push for the Senate to conduct its own inquiry into the allegations.

“On Monday, through a resolution, I will seek an official Senate probe into the matter and into other schemes and scams that defraud, swindle, or deceive our airline passengers,” Recto said.

He said a Senate investigation is needed because the agencies operating at NAIA failed to “curb the abuses on their own. There is no working system that is guarding the guards.”

Recto said that a functioning internal affairs system would have caught the problems early on and necessary actions taken against erring personnel.
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Joined: 05 Nov 2010
Location: Kyungbuk

PostPosted: Tue Sep 29, 2015 2:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

MANILA, Philippines - The House of Representatives will conduct a parallel inquiry into the alleged practice of some personnel of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) of extorting money from passengers after planting bullets in their luggage.

“This so-called ‘laglag-bala’ extortion racket is a disgrace to the NAIA as an institution even though only a handful of its personnel could be involved in such nefarious activity,” Valenzuela City Rep. Sherwin Gatchalian, who filed a resolution calling for the inquiry, said.

“This has to be investigated to ensure that this kind of condemnable act is permanently stopped,” he added.

At least two incidents have been reported, the latest involving American tourist Michael White, who was detained by the airport police for five days.

A .22 caliber bullet was allegedly found in White’s luggage. He said a male security guard told him that his problem could be “settled” for P30,000.

Two bullets were also reportedly found in the luggage of a wheelchair-bound balikbayan who was forced to shell out P500 to an airport security personnel so she could leave the country.

The Office for Transportation Security has started its inquiry into the scam.

Sen. Ralph Recto said he would also file a resolution seeking an investigation of abuses allegedly committed by NAIA employees against tourists and balikbayans.
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Joined: 05 Nov 2010
Location: Kyungbuk

PostPosted: Thu Oct 29, 2015 5:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The fun in "It's more fun in the Philippines" continues...

Netizens sign petition for ‘laglag-bala’ probe

MANILA, Philippines - Some overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) would rather spend Christmas abroad rather than land in jail due to the alleged “laglag-bala” extortion scheme at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA), according to an online petition calling for an investigation of the incidents.

Almost 5,000 people have signed a petition calling on presidential candidates and Senators Miriam Defensor-Santiago and Grace Poe to initiate an investigation on the alleged scheme at the airport.

Ednalyn Purungganan, an OFW-based in Hong Kong, started the petition amid concerns over the discovery of bullets inside the luggage of passengers at NAIA in the past months.

“We are planning to go home in December, but after what happened to Gloria Ortinez who is a domestic helper like us, we are concerned that we might suffer the same fate,” read the petition written in Filipino.

Ortinez, an OFW in Hong Kong for 20 years, was arrested earlier this week after personnel of the Office of Transportation Security claimed that she has a bullet from carbine rifle inside her luggage.

She was detained after failing to pay the P80,000 bail set for the illegal possession of ammunition case filed against her.

The Pasay prosecutor’s office has ordered her release after determining that the bullet the airport police presented as evidence against her was different from the one shown in the photograph they had taken when they allegedly discovered the prohibited item.

In her petition, Purungganan noted the strict rules in Hong Kong that would deter anyone from trying to bring in bullets in their luggage.

“With what is happening, people are saying that we should just work here and be contented with Skype and phone calls, which is better than being in jail when get back to our beloved nation,” she added.

She called on the senators to help OFWs and ensure that they will be able to get to their families without falling victim to the extortion scam at NAIA.

Meanwhile, Sen. Nancy Binay denounced the scam, saying it could be part of a well-oiled operation that can be traced as far back as 10 years ago.

Binay has filed a resolution urging her colleagues in the Senate to immediately look into the alleged planting of ammunition in the luggage of unsuspecting travelers.

According to Binay, personnel of the Office for Transportation Security, an attached agency of the Department of Transportation and Communications, and members of the Philippine National Police-Aviation Security Group are the ones allegedly responsible for the extortion scam.

Last edited by Zackback on Mon Apr 04, 2016 12:44 am; edited 1 time in total
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Joined: 05 Nov 2010
Location: Kyungbuk

PostPosted: Mon Apr 04, 2016 12:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Rather than just starting a new thread about the NAIA I'll just post here to keep you folks updated concerning the latest gaffs there.

There must have been a slight glitch in the system. Very Happy

NAIA-3 blackout strands thousands.

82 flights cancelled

Thousands of passengers were stranded at Terminal 3 of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) after a power outage hit the facility at 8:45 p.m. on Saturday and lasted more than five hours.

Power was restored at about 2 a.m. yesterday, but by then, at least 82 domestic flights had been cancelled and four international flights delayed.

Cebu Pacific Air, which uses the terminal heavily, said in a statement that 78 one-way flights were cancelled, affecting at least 13,950 passengers.

NAIA-3 officials said a sub-station of power provider Manila Electric Co. (Meralco) tripped and caused the blackout.

However, Meralco spokesman Joe Zaldarriaga denied the allegation.

Transportation and Communications Secretary Joseph Emilio Abaya said NAIA-3 has about 10 generator sets, but these failed to transmit enough power to keep the terminal operations going.

“The genset kicked in (when the blackout occurred), but it failed to transmit power…there is drainage in the battery-powered switch gear,” Abaya told GMA News.

Pasig City Rep. Roman Romulo expressed disbelief, saying, “I am appalled by the fact that NAIA-3 had no contingent or back-up plan for such an event.”

He said the incident was “shameful, to say the least.”

“It showed the lack of competence and foresight of those running the airport and the country’s transportation network, including the breakdown-prone Metro Rail Transit 3,” Romulo added.

Valenzuela Rep. Rex Gatchalian called for the ouster of Abaya and NAIA general manager Jose Angel Honrado.

“This is no longer a laughing matter. A five-hour blackout resulting in canceled and delayed flights is proof that the transportation secretary and the NAIA general manager have been sleeping on their jobs. They should be sacked immediately,” the lawmaker stressed.

Gatchalian, who is the spokesman of presidential candidate Sen. Grace Poe, said the public deserves better services from the government. He lamented that the lack of a back-up power source reflects the kind of leaders that President Aquino has installed at the NAIA.

Manila International Airport Authority (MIAA) senior assistant general manager Vicente Guerzon said power was partially restored at 12:30 a.m. yesterday and fully normalized at around 2 a.m.

Free rebooking

The country’s national carrier Philippine Airlines (PAL), which operates PAL Express, is waiving the rebooking fees and charges for all the affected passengers within 30 days. They are also giving passengers the option to get a refund.

PAL had four canceled flights and 62 delayed flights. Many passengers missed their connecting flights after opting not to push through with their schedules following the long queues outside the dark airport terminal.

Cebu Pacific Air, which canceled at least 78 domestic flights, also gave its passengers the refund or rebook options.

“We sincerely hope for our guests’ understanding, as this situation is due to factors beyond the airline’s control,” an airline statement read.

International carriers Cathay Pacific, Emirates, KLM and Singapore Airlines reported at least one delayed flight each.

Exhausted passengers lay sprawled on the floor as check-in counters and luggage carousels shut down. Long queues formed outside the terminal as entrances were closed for security reasons until power was restored.

Terminal 3 of the NAIA, named after the assassinated father of incumbent President Aquino, handles an average of 350 domestic and international flights daily, according to data from the transportation department.

It is one of four terminals in a complex that was once dubbed by the travel website Guide to Sleeping in Airports as the world’s worst due to leaking toilets and creaking facilities.

Gatchalian said the NAIA is an embarrassment given its history of flight delays due to runway congestion, tanim-bala (bullet planting in passengers’ luggage) and ill-maintained infrastructure.

The airport authority, Guerzon stressed, apologizes for the inconvenience and said that “measures are now being worked out to make sure that a power outage does not occur again in the future.”

He added that NAIA officials and Meralco would analyze and assess the incident today.

NAIA-3 manager Octavio Lina said they had all generators operating during the outage, but that this was limited only to airport lights and air-conditioning systems.

During the incident, all NAIA-3 systems were down, especially at the departure area, he added. Operations at the arrival area continued, although with “limited resources.” – With Jess Diaz, Christina Mendez, Non Alquitran, Louella Desiderio, AFP
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Joined: 23 May 2007
Location: Seoul

PostPosted: Sun May 08, 2016 12:30 am    Post subject: Reply with quote
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