12 nabbed in Dagupan cybersex den raid

DAGUPAN CITY — The National Bureau of Investigation’s Dagupan District Office (NBI-DADO) arrested 12 people as it swooped down on a suspected cyberporn den masquerading as a call center in Barangay Tapuac here Friday.

NBI-DADO head agent Rizaldy Jaymalin, in an interview, said the operation was done by virtue of a search warrant signed by Presiding Judge Gonzalo P. Marata of the Regional Trial Court Branch 48 in Urdaneta City, against a call center allegedly involved in shady activities here, which is owned by a certain George Adam Tan.

“Two months ago, we received intelligence information regarding that establishment, and validated it. Once its accuracy was verified, we immediately applied for a search warrant, and it was granted,” Jaymalin said.

He said 11 people — nine male and two female employees of the establishment — were seen chatting with foreigners as the agents proceeded with the search operation.

Jaymalin said the male employees were even posing as females and doing live chat with their clients.

“For as low as USD50 on signing up, these foreigners will be able to chat with them and see the woman behind the camera, not knowing that they were being scammed into viewing already pre-recorded video clips of (other) women,” he said.

Jaymalin said Tan was not around when the search warrant was implemented, but he arrived later on with his lawyer.

He added that violations pertaining to the clearances of the business establishment were discovered as the authorities conducted further investigation.

“They applied for a barangay clearance, with a business inclined for ‘encoding’, and a business permit intended for ‘general services’,” Jaymalin added.

Several computers, storage devices and other paraphernalia, which will undergo further examination from technical experts, were confiscated by authorities during the raid.

Jaymalin said Tan and the employees will be charged before the Provincial Prosecutor for violation of Article 201, in relation to Republic Act No. 10175 or the Cybercrime Prevention Act, upon inquest.

“We are still conducting profiling and background checking of the arrested employees, also to identify whether there are minors among them,” he noted. Ahikam Pasion/PNA-northboundasia.com