Laglag-bala scheme embarrassing, alarming – De Lima

BACOLOD CITY, Philippines – The recent laglag-bala (bullet-planting) scheme at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport is “very embarrassing” and “alarming,” former justice secretary and now Liberal Party senatorial bet Leila De Lima said on Thursday, November 5.

De Lima, who was in Bacolod City for the 117th Cinco de Noviembre celebration, said that this issue "should not be taken lightly."

It has been a “source of embarrassment,” she added, as foreigners are also getting worried. Travellers now have to wrap their luggages with plastics and tapes to avoid falling victims to this scheme.

“Why it is so brazen?” she asked, citing the multiple incidents that had been reported. The Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) said on Wednesday there had been more than 1,000 cases reported from January to November this year.

“Let’s put a stop to this abhorrent practice. The possible motive could be extortion,” she said.

She added that it's difficult to speculate that there is a syndicate behind it, and called for an immediate investigation so "we can draw correct conclusions."

The DOTC and the National Bureau of Investigation are already investigating these cases, she added.

Meanwhile, Negros Occidental Governor Alfredo Marañon Jr said that concerned agencies should “be strict and vigilant” and should “police their ranks.”

He cited that the scheme have already victimized innocent people, especially the overseas Filipino workers.

Marañon gave assurances that the provincial government of Negros Occidental will extend legal assistance to any Negrense who may fall victim to the laglag-bala scheme. –