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Ang pagbibigay ng utang bilang placement fee sa ofw, isang krimen?


Manila, June 7, 2012 – Oo,  ang pagpapautang at pagsingil sa overseas Filipino worker (OFW) ng isang recruitment agency bilang pambayad ng placement fee o mga POEA required fees para sa isang application for overseas work kung saan ang tubo o interest rate ay mataas sa EIGHTPERCENT (8%) PER ANNUM kung saan ang OFW ay pinakuha ng guarantor o kaya ay pinag-issue ng post dated check bilang seguridad sa pagbabayad ay pinagbabawal ng Republic Act. No. 10022 otherwise known as “Migrant Workers and Overseas Filipinos Act of 1995,” at ito ay considered na “illegal recruitment“, as amended. Sinasabi sa Section 5, amending Section 6 ng R.A. 8042:

“SEC. 6. Definition. – For purposes of this Act, illegal recruitment shall mean any act of canvassing, enlisting, contracting, transporting, utilizing, hiring, or procuring workers and includes referring, contract services, promising or advertising for employment abroad, whether for profit or not, when undertaken by non-licensee or non-holder of authority contemplated under Article 13(f) of Presidential Decree No. 442, as amended, otherwise known as the Labor Code of the Philippines: X X X It shall likewise include the following acts, whether committed by any person, whether a non-licensee, non-holder, licensee or holder of authority: X X X

“In addition to the acts enumerated above, it shall also be unlawful for any person or entity to commit the following prohibited acts:

(1) Grant a loan to an overseas Filipino worker with interest exceeding eight percent (8%) per annum, which will be used for payment of legal and allowable placement fees and make the migrant worker issue, either personally or through a guarantor or accommodation party, postdated checks in relation to the said loan;

Ang parusa sa illegal recruitment under Sec. 6 ng R.A. 10022 ay “(a) Any person found guilty of illegal recruitment shall suffer the penalty of imprisonment of not less than twelve (12) years and one (1) day but not more than twenty (20) years and a fine of not less than One million pesos (P1,000,000.00) nor more than Two million pesos (P2,000,000.00).

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