BI chief recommends relief of acting port chief amid ‘pastillas’ controversy

By: - Reporter / @MAgerINQ
/ 03:25 PM February 20, 2020

MANILA, Philippines — Bureau of Immigration (BI) Commissioner Jaime Morente has recommended the relief of its official, who earlier claimed no knowledge about the so-called “pastillas” modus at Philippine airports.


Morente revealed this during Thursday’s hearing of the Senate committee on women headed by Senator Risa Hontiveros.

“On Feb. 19, I sent a memorandum to SOJ (Secretary of Justice), requesting for the confirmation of the relief of the acting port division chief as the investigation is presently ongoing,” he said.


“He should be assigned in the admin as well,” Morente added.

At this point, Hontiveros clarified if the BI chief has asked for the relief of Grifton Medina.

“Yes, Your Honor. I asked the permission of the Secretary of Justice,” Morente said.

Aside from Medina, Morente said he also ordered the relief and dismissal of other employees tagged in the alleged scam that Hontiveros exposed during Monday’s hearing of her panel.

He said he also directed concerned officials in the bureau to identify the personnel involved in the said scheme.

READ: Pogo ‘pastillas’ scam: 5 sacked; probe set

The modus was called “pastillas” as money was allegedly rolled up in bond paper like the popular local sweet delicacy.


Hontiveros said the bribe money given to corrupt immigration officials and employees in exchange for seamless entry to the Philippines of Chinese could have reached a total of P10 billion.

But during Monday’s hearing, Medina said it was the first time he heard of such modus.

“This is the first time I saw this particular rundown of amounts,” Medina then told the committee.

READ: ‘Pastillas’ modus allowing entry of Chinese nationals baffles BI execs 

Edited by KGA
Read Next
Don't miss out on the latest news and information.
View comments

Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.

TAGS: BI, bribery, Bureau of Immigration, Chinese, corruption, Immigration, Local news, NAIA, Nation, national news, news, pastillas scheme, Philippine news updates
For feedback, complaints, or inquiries, contact us.

© Copyright 1997-2020 INQUIRER.net | All Rights Reserved

We use cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. By continuing, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. To find out more, please click this link.