DOJ to put Peter Lim on Interpol red notice

By: Marlon Ramos, Tina G. Santos - Philippine Daily Inquirer | June 29,2021 - 07:09 AM

Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra. (File photo by Philippine Daily Inquirer)

The Department of Justice (DOJ) would be asking the Interpol to place President Duterte’s “kumpadre” (wedding cosponsor), indicted drug lord Peter Lim, in its red notice list after he allegedly fled the country, Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra said on Monday.

But Guevarra said the Bureau of Immigration (BI) had no record showing that a certain “Peter Go Lim,” who had been in hiding after a Makati City court ordered his arrest for drug trafficking in August 2018, left for abroad.

“We note that Peter Lim has numerous namesakes, with at least one having left the country recently,” said Dana Sandoval, BI spokesperson.

“However, upon thorough verification with our system, as well as document matching, Mr. Peter Go Lim, the subject of news articles, has no recent departure record as of date,” she added.

Asked if Lim could have left the country using an alias, Sandoval said the BI could only answer whether one has left via the country’s airports or seaports.

“[But] if he used a fraudulent passport, then our equipment would be able to detect it,” she said.

Sandoval also noted that Lim had an active hold departure order issued in 2018.

Last week, Interior Secretary Eduardo Año said he received information that the wealthy businessman from Cebu, who had a P500,000 bounty for his arrest, eluded the authorities and flew out of the country to avoid prosecution.

“Aside from intensifying efforts on the part of our intelligence and law enforcement agents to track down Lim, we may also request the Interpol to assist if there are indeed indications that this fugitive has slipped out of our country,” Guevarra told the Inquirer.

Asked if he would ask the Interpol to include Lim in its list of fugitives, he said: “I think it is about time.”

Citing immigration records, the justice secretary said Lim’s last registered foreign trip was in 2017 and that his passport had already expired in 2019.

When asked about the possibility that Lim could still be in the country, Guevarra said: “We cannot really be sure.”

“Our country has a very extensive coastline. There are known backdoors in our southern borders,” he added.

Mr. Duterte, who had promised to end the country’s drug problem within the first six months of his administration, identified Lim as one of the country’s biggest drug lords shortly after launching his bloody drug war in 2016. INQ

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TAGS: drug lord, Interpool red notice, Justice Sec. Menardo Guevarra, Peter Lim

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