BUSINESSMAN Kenneth Dong, the alleged middleman involved in the P6.4 billion shabu shipment from China vehemently denied trying to leave the country and bribing immigration officials to allow him to leave.
In a statement sent to reporters yesterday, Dong’s lawyer, Leilani Villarino, said the businessman had no intention to flee the Philippines even after several courts acquitted him of rape and drug charges.
Bureau of Immigration (BI) spokesperson Ma. Antonette Mangrobang claimed that Dong Yu Shen or Kenneth Dong said the port operations division of the bureau submitted a report about the incident.
“Our immigration officers are always on alert in enforcing the Immigration Lookout Bulletin Order issued by the Department of Justice (DOJ) on the persons allegedly involved with the drug shipment cases. We will not allow anyone to bribe our officers,” she said.
According to Mangrobang, Dong allegedly attempted to bribe immigration officials with P10 million to allow him to leave the country.
“Kenneth Dong is categorically denying the information from the BI that he attempted to bribe a BI official so that he can flee the country. He does not intend to leave nor attempted to leave, at one time or another. Hence, this allegation from the BI officials is not only false but malicious as well,” said Villarino.
Days after the RTC in Valenzuela City released its decision dismissing the drug charges against Dong in connection with the shabu shipment, the BI announced that another suspected player in the smuggling of the P6.4 billion of shabu, Chinese businessman Chen Ju Long, also known as Richard Tan, was intercepted at the Clark International Airport. Tan was supposedly bound for Shanghai, China.
Both Dong and Tan are in the BI’s lookout list since last August. The DOJ is still conducting a hearing on the smuggling cases filed against the two businessmen and former customs broker Mark Taguba.
Investigate allegations instead
Villarino BI should instead investigate the allegations hurled against her client before issuing statements to the public.
“Kenneth Dong is asking the BI to investigate first before issuing any irresponsible statements. False allegations such as these have indubitably brought additional and unnecessary woes especially to his family,” Villarino said.
“Even after he was released from confinement, Kenneth Dong remained in Manila in his earnest desire to prove his innocence. As a matter of fact, he returned to the country from Singapore purposely to attend the Senate hearings to clear his name after he was dragged to this controversy,” she added. /with Inquirer.net