4 Pinay night club workers rescued in Malaysia

Posted at 04/21/2012 9:48 AM | Updated as of 04/21/2012 6:56 PM

MANILA, Philippines – Four Filipinas who were forced to work in a night club were rescued in Malaysia on April 18.

The embassy did not disclose the victims’ names. It said the Pinays were locked up and forced to work in a night club in Johor Baru, about 220 kilometers away from Kuala Lumpur, near the border with Singapore.

The victims were allegedly recruited and escorted by a certain Ramil Garcia.

They were moved from Manila to Zamboanga and then Sandakan in Sabah, with the promise of high-paying jobs in Malaysia.

"Our Filipinos should already beware anytime they are made to exit through the ‘back door’ in the Tawi-Tawi area without proper documentations. In most likelihood, they are being trafficked already," the embassy said.

They were turned over to a certain Norminda Buko Whigan for "sale" to night club owners as customer service workers. They were informed of their real work only upon their arrival in Sandakan.

After a two-week stay in Sandakan and no offers from club owners there, the four were transported by plane to Johor Bahru in West Malaysia on March 29 and offered to a certain club owner Emy Wong, who made them work the following day.

They were able to ask for help from the Blas F. Ople Policy Center and others, which alerted the Embassy.

Agents from the Criminal Investigation Division of the Royal Malaysian Police, together with 2 embassy officials, raided the club, but its owner left the premises with the Pinays minutes before authorities arrived.

The team went to the Wong residence where they found and rescued the Pinays. Mrs. Wong's husband, who was in the house at that time, was also arrested. Mrs. Wong is now being pursued by authorities.