The Sha Tin Magistrates' Courts. Photo: Google Maps
The Sha Tin Magistrates' Courts. Photo: Google Maps

Two Filipinas were each sentenced to four months in jail at the Sha Tin Magistrates’ Court last month for making false representations and using forged documents to enter Hong Kong on domestic worker visas.

Ma Isabel M. Almayda, 46, and Mary Ann B. Artates, 43, both pleaded guilty to the charges before Magistrate Winnie Lau, reported.

Court documents showed Almayda used the forged documents to obtain a work visa and arrived in Hong Kong in 2011 as a domestic worker for a local employer. She renewed her visa four times from 2013 to 2017, but was arrested this year after immigration authorities discovered her forged documents.

The lawyer asked for a lenient sentence, citing his client’s guilty plea, her remorse and promise not to re-offend as well as her clean record in Hong Kong and the Philippines.

Meanwhile, the prosecution had asked the magistrate to delay Almayda’s sentencing until August 23, saying she had information that was valuable to the investigation of similar cases which could have an impact on her sentence.

But Almayda opposed the application and told the magistrate she did not want to help the prosecution.

Artates pleaded guilty to making a false statement when she first entered Hong Kong in 2014 on a domestic worker visa and was charged with making a false representation to an immigration officer when she renewed her visa in 2015.

She was arrested in January this year after immigration officers discovered her fraud when she applied for a change of employer.

In mitigation, her defense lawyer said Artates had a clean record and was remorseful.