Hong Kong police have confirmed that a suspended Filipino barrister was arrested in late August over her alleged involvement in a job scam that victimized hundreds of Filipino workers in Hong Kong two years ago.
Police confirmed that 56-year-old Ody Lai Puk-yim was arrested on Aug. 30 at Hong Kong International Airport for alleged conspiracy to defraud and money laundering when she returned from a trip to Manila, the sunwebhk.com reported.
Lai was allowed to post bail and was told to report to police in mid-October while the complaints against her were being investigated.
Consul Paulo Saret, the head of the consulate’s assistance to nationals section, said Lai’s bail condition was that she could not travel outside Hong Kong without permission from police.
Lai is suspected of involvement in the recruitment of about 600 Filipinos in Hong Kong, Macau and the Philippines for non-existent high-paying jobs in Britain and Canada in 2016.
Each domestic worker reportedly paid processing fees of HK$10,000 to HK$15,000 (US$1,280-$1,920) to a 65-year-od Filipina Ester Ylagan, the co-owner of the defunct Emry’s Service Staff and Employment Agency.
Ylagan was a friend of Lai and was arrested in June this year in Hong Kong. The two women were also suspected of involvement in the transfer of about KH$10 million to several countries as far apart as Malaysia, Turkey and Burkina Faso at about the same time.
Documents showing the transfers were reportedly unearthed by lawyers looking into the recruitment scam and turned over to police.