Bamban mayor denies ties to raided Pogo firm in Tarlac

Bamban mayor denies ties to raided Pogo firm in Tarlac

/ 02:28 PM May 07, 2024

MANILA, Philippines — Bamban Mayor Alice Guo washed her hands off her alleged ties to a Philippine Offshore Gaming Operator (Pogo) raided by authorities in early March for charges of alleged human trafficking and serious illegal detention.

Speaking at the Senate panel on women’s hearing on controversies hounding Pogo firms on Tuesday, Guo stated that she is neither “connected” nor a “protector” of Zuan Yuan Technology Inc.

“Unang una po, hindi po ako konektado, hindi po ako operator, hindi po ako protector ng Pogo. Wala po akong kinalaman sa kanilang operation at sa kahit anong gawain sa loob at sa labas ng Pogo,” said Guo.


(First of all, I am not connected with Pogo, I am not an operator, and I am not a protector of Pogo. I am not related to any operation or activities within or outside Pogos.)


Senator Win Gatchalian initially bared Guo’s alleged ties to the firm, saying that authorities found a billing statement from Tarlac II Electric Cooperative (Tarel Co) Inc. showing that Zun Yuan’s electric meter was registered under Guo’s name.

Gatchalian also said a vehicle seized during the raid was found to be registered under the mayor’s name.

The senator believes there are “damning pieces of evidence that Guo might be involved in the operation of [the] Pogo facility implicated in various criminal activities.”

READ: DILG asked to probe mayor for links to raided Pogo

Guo, in the statement she read on Tuesday, contradicted all of these allegations.

“Tama po na sa akin po nakapangalan ang metro ng Tarel Co because I was the former landowner of the property. Ang tanging sinasabi po ng dokumento ay ako ang nag apply ng temporary connection way back 2019 — ng electricity po para sa entire compound. At siguro po hindi na naalis ang aking pangalan sa dokumento ng Tarel Co,” said Guo.


(I confirm that Tarel Co’s meter is under my name because I was the former landowner of the property. The document only says that I applied for a temporary connection way back in 2019 for the entire compound’s electricity. Maybe my name wasn’t removed from Tarel Co’s document.)

According to Guo, she used to be an incorporator of Baofu – the compound where the Pogo firm Zun Yuan is located.

She admitted that she used to own the vehicle found within the compound, but she noted that it was no longer in her possession as it was already sold in 2020.

“Wala pong katotohanan na pagmamay-ari ko po kahit isang villa sa compound at ni minsan po hindi po ako natulog doon. Sa katunayan po, hindi ko po nakita ang kalahatan ng villas na naitayo pagkatapos ko pong mag divest ng shares sa Baofu,” she said.

(There’s no truth to claims that I own one of the villas in the compound, and I have not even slept there once. In fact, I haven’t even seen all of the villas built there after I divested my shares from Baofu.)

In March, Zun Yuan’s 10-hectare compound was raided, leading to the rescue of 499 foreign workers. The raid was based on two court-issued search warrants for alleged human trafficking and serious illegal detention of Pogo workers.

READ: Malacañang freezes assets of raided Pogo firm in Tarlac

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The Palace, in April, then directed the Anti-Money Laundering Council to freeze and preserve the entire compound of Zun Yuan, including its other assets.

TAGS: Bamban, pogo, Tarlac

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