Cops again try to shut down notorious ‘university’
Members of the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) of the Philippine National Police on Thursday raided several establishments along C.M. Recto Avenue in Manila that are notorious for making fake documents—diplomas, death certificates, senior citizen cards and even land titles.
CIDG members from Camp Crame came with two police trucks and stormed the so-called “Recto University,” entering five stores and arresting seven men suspected of being “fixers” or agents who seek out customers in need of counterfeit papers. They face charges for fabrication of public documents.
“We will not stop with our raids until their operations stop. We have a directive to implement the order of President Duterte to go after them,” said Senior Supt. Belli Tamayo, CIDG-NCR chief. “Actually, this is not the first CIDG operation against them and we will continue until they stop. They have different kinds of IDs. You name it, they have it.”
Land title for P4,500
Tamayo said they had identified 30 shops along Recto Avenue in Sta. Cruz after conducting surveillance operations for three weeks. The last test buy was done Thursday morning with one store offering to fabricate a land title for P4,500.
The raiding team arrived on Recto around 3:30 p.m. and seized printing materials, two “video karera” machines, and samples of fake documents, including fake land titles, diplomas and senior citizen cards.
Chief Insp. Baltazar Beran, a member of the raiding team, said the stores charged P600 to P1,000 for a fake birth certificate. “They can make fake firearm licenses, driver’s licenses, birth certificates, police IDs, NBI (National Bureau of Investigation) IDs, and they look real,” he said.
Bangko Sentral alerted
The CIDG submitted a fake document to the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) for verification because it was of a type of paper that only the BSP could issue, Beran added.
“At first look, (the BSP officers) said the document was fake because it had no serial number but they were wondering how a paper like that could come out of Recto because they are the only ones who issue that kind of paper,” Beran said.
The police also came across fake death certificates that were intended for making false insurance claims abroad.
“For example, a Filipina is married to a Japanese. So what they do is they take a picture of the Japanese inside a coffin looking dead. They then get a fake death certificate here (in Recto) so that the wife can file an insurance claim (in Japan),” Beran said.
They also found fake medical records supposedly coming from a major hospital in Manila, the official added.