News : Suspected Health Card Scammers Fall
Dec 4, 2013 -- Some 73 call center agents of a business process outsourcing (BPO) company are detained at the Philippine National Police headquarters in Camp Crame for their alleged involvement in a health card fraud operation.
A search warrant was issued at 11:45 pm on Monday after a former call center employee filed a complaint for alleged violation of Republic Act 8484 or Access Device Regulation Act of 1998.
The law defines access device as "any card, plate, code, account number, electronic serial number, personal identification number, or other telecommunications service, equipment, or instrumental identifier, or other means of account access that can be used to obtain money, good, services, or any other thing of value or to initiate a transfer of funds (other than a transfer originated solely by paper instrument)."
The Philippine National Police's CIDG Anti-Cyber Crime Division says the company allegedly obtains information from foreigners, such as their health card numbers, to skim money from their accounts.
The exact amount generated from this "scam" has yet to be determined by the PNP forensics team, as all files and computers are already under its custody.
Among the 73 detainees are three American nationals and one Indian national who are said to be executives of the BPO company.
A relative of one of the detained call center agents claims they have been held for more than 24 hours pending their inquest proceedings in Mandaluyong City.
If the suspicions against the detainees are proven, access device fraud is punishable with a fine of not less than P10,000 pesos and imprisonment of from 6 to 12 years.
Posted by Veronica Silva Cusi, news correspondent
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The Philippine National Police (Filipino: Pambansang Pulisya ng Pilipinas and abbreviated as PNP) is the civilian national police force of the Philippines.
Published: Thursday, December 5, 2013