THE Lapu-Lapu City Prosecutor’s Office has requested for deportation proceedings against three of the four Nigerian nationals who were arrested in June this year for allegedly falsifying government identification cards and documents.

This after the criminal charges against the suspects identified as Augustine Onyekachi Nkwocha, also known as Arlaed Klean Frank, 40; Tosin Samuel Oguntuye, also known as Philip, 30; Chibuike Joseph Nwokoro, also known as Felix, 31, were upheld by the Lapu-Lapu City Prosecutor’s Office.

The cases filed against the three suspects include six counts of falsification by private individuals and use of falsified documents under Article 172 paragraph 1 of the Revised Penal Code, additional 16 counts of the same case against Nkwovha as well as 16 counts of illegal use of aliases under Republic Act 6085 against him.

According to the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) Cebu District Office, the recommended bail for all the cases is P2 million, and so far, only Nwokoro and Oguntuye were able to post bail.

Deportation proceedings

“All the three accused were also endorsed to the Bureau of Immigration (BI) for verification as to their identities and immigration status,” the NBI said, in a press statement sent to reporters on Friday, July 1, 2022.

“It was further requested that deportation proceedings be initiated against them for being undesirable aliens due to involvement in illegal and criminal acts here in the country,” it added.

The suspects were among the four arrested on June 13 in a private subdivision in Barangay Agus, Lapu-Lapu City for allegedly falsifying government identification cards and documents.

Arnel Pura, agent-in-charge of the NBI Cebu District Office, however, told SunStar Cebu Saturday, July 2, that they cannot be deported pending hearing of their criminal cases, adding this will only be made possible after their final conviction in the court of law.

Fourth suspect released

Pura said the fourth one, who is a priest, was not included in the charge since they were not able to recover any falsified documents from him. They also found no evidence that he conspired with the three other Nigerian nationals to commit the crime.

Pura said the priest was released from NBI’s custody following his arrest but was endorsed to the BI.

The priest was eventually released by the BI after it was found that that his immigration papers are in order.

The agent-in-charge earlier said the fake IDs and documents were supposed to be used to open bank accounts for money transfers that the accused would use for their online scams.

They reportedly copied the IDs of Philhealth, Bureau of Internal Revenue and NBI on Colon Street, Cebu City. (PR)