JUSTICE Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre II has formally directed the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) to conduct an investigation against gaming tycoon Jack Lam and the Immigration officials accused of extortion.

In a Department Order dated December 8 but was only signed by Aguirre on Tuesday, the DOJ directed the NBI to lead the probe in relation to the bribery/extortion accusations by or against Lam and the Bureau of Immigration Commissioners in relation to the arrest of more than 1,000 undocumented Chinese nationals arrested at Lam's online gaming operation in Clark, Pampanga.

Aguirre ordered NBI Director Dante Gierran to submit a report to the DOJ related to the implementation of its order after it concluded its findings. No deadline was given to the NBI chief.

"We want to get to the bottom of these allegations and we believe that the probe that will be conducted by the NBI will help us get to the truth," Aguirre said following the issuance of the order.

President Rodrigo Duterte earlier ordered the arrest of Lam for bribery and economic sabotage, after his alleged attempt to bribe Aguirre and Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (Pagcor) chair Andrea Domingo.

Immigration Officials Al Argosino and Michael Robles on the other hand are accused of extorting P50 million from Lam in exchange for the release of nearly half of the Chinese nationals illegally staying and working in the country. (Sunnex)