The recruiters who promised them jobs as call centre agents electrocuted, shackled, and held prisoner three overseas Filipino workers who had been rescued from human trafficking in Myanmar.
In the “24 Oras” broadcast by Ivan Mayrina and Mark Salazar, their spouses told the heartbreaking storey of how their employers forced them to work as con artists.
Over P50,000 a month, including commissions, was promised to them.
“Sa Facebook, ayun na nagchachat na sa kanila sige kami gagastos dyan sige kami na bahala pagdating doon porsyentuhan na lang doon,” said the wife of one of the OFWs.
The victims were made to travel by boat from Zamboanga to Malaysia, then to Thailand and finally another boat ride to Myanmar.
“Thailand po pangako sa kanila tapos nagtataka na lang asawa ko bakit siya tinawid sa bangka tapos piniringan daw hanggang nagulat na lang siya may van na sumundo sa kanila,” she said.
“Scammer po sila. Kapag naka-invest na ng buong pera ang tao hindi na nila ibabalik, sa kumpanya na nila mapupunta ang perang yun,” she added.
She claimed that every time her husband fell short of the target number of victims they were intended to con, they were held captive for 40 days and subjected to harassment in the “penalty room and black room.”
“Pinoposas daw po sila tapos bago daw sila pakainin ng dalawang pandesal at mineral na tubig kukuryentihin daw muna sila at lalatiguhin,” said another victim’s spouse.
The husband of one of the OFWs who was rescued stated, like the other survivors, that the only option to leave the area was to pay blood money.
“Kapag nakabayad ka kagaya nung mga nakapagbayad, nakakalabas ng compound bahala na kung sino susundo sayo dun kung police ng Myanmar o police ng Thailand,” he said.
He claimed that despite their attempts to obtain ransom support from the Inter-Agency Council Against Trafficking (IACAT), they were unsuccessful.