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The stink of agarwood trafficking in Panay

Tree trunks and limbs left in the wild, gutted, severed, or sliced, like a disgusting scene in a nightmare film minus the flesh and blood. No signs of shame or scruple from the band of marauders who left their victims in such an abhorrent state of rot. The mass slaughter of rare trees would have...


Trafficking Filipinos: Are immigration, airport personnel involved?

(Last of two parts) A mix of excitement and anxiety filled “Paulo” as he stepped off a cab at the departure area of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (Naia) Terminal 3 on Oct. 4. He was flying to Thailand, his first trip out of the country.    Everything had happened so fast. It was only on...


Trafficking Filipinos: Philippines becoming ‘incubator of scammers’

(First of two parts) Tantalized by the promise of being paid P50,000 a month, “Betty,” a single mother of four in Navotas City north of Manila, didn’t think twice about grabbing an opportunity last April to work as a call center agent in Thailand. Before the month ended, the recruiter had arranged the Covid-19 antigen...