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Agency owner hid when irate customers posted her photo, says co-accused

19 October 2021

By Vir B. Lumicao 

The two are on a District Court trial at West Kowloon Court

A Filipina being tried for allegedly accepting payments for fake jobs and laundering $700,000 in Hong Kong banks said her co-accused employment agency owner went into hiding when angry applicants posted her photo on social media tagging her as a scammer.

Marijane Biscocho, 44, also said in the continuation of her District Court trial for money laundering, using false trade description and breach of her visa condition, that her Filipina colleague who fled before she and her boss were arrested had played a bigger role in the operation.

In her testimony today, Oct 19, before Judge Kathie Cheung, Biscocho said she learned from her co-employee Nympha Lumatac that the agency owner, Lennis Ebrahim, had gone into hiding in October 2019.

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Ebrahim, 55, owner of WHT Consulting Co that offered the bogus jobs, is being tried with Biscocho on a charge of money laundering and one for wrongful acceptance of payment for a product.

Biscocho faces an additional laundering charge, and 20 of the wrongful payment as she was the one who allegedly accepted the money from the scammed jobseekers.

Both are out on bail.

The two allegedly controlled a bank account with HSBC while a separate one at Hang Seng Bank was in Biscocho’s name. The two accounts were said to have been used to launder the money collected from the job seekers.


Eleven Filipinos accused the two accused of charging at least $12,000 each for such non-existent jobs as gardeners, drivers, printers and field workers in Hong Kong and Macau for their relatives and friends. The pay offer was $7,000 to $13,000 a month.

However, only seven of them appeared as witnesses in the trial. They were Rosalina Agcalis, Jocelyn Domingo, Nena Castro, Maria Aurora Lagura, Jovelyn Villaflor, Mary Joy Liggayu and Preciosa Abellera

On questioning by defense counsel Phil Chau who showed her a photo of Ebrahim, with the word “Scammer” emblazoned above it, Biscocho said that was posted on social media by the applicants in October 2019 when they could no longer contact the agency owner.


Biscocho also said Agcalis posted the Hong Kong ID card of Lumatac on social media, calling her a scammer. Two separate photos of Lumatac and Biscocho were also said to have been posted by Agcalis to warn the public about their alleged scam.

It was after Agcalis posted Ebrahim’s photo for failing to appear at a scheduled meeting at the Consulate that the agency owner went into hiding, said Biscocho.

Lumatac, the prosecution had said, later fled to Macau and returned to the Philippines.

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“I tried to go to Lennis’ house to contact her. I went with Nympha. Nympha told me I had to wait downstairs,” Biscocho said, referring to the Kowloon Bay home of Ebrahim. The agency owner reportedly has another house in Baguio Villa, Pokfulam.

Biscocho on her arrest in November 2019

Biscocho said she waited from 8am to 1pm but Ebrahim did not appear. Biscocho said she tried to call the agency owner but Ebrahim had blocked her. Later, the agency boss cut off all her three phone lines, she said.

Biscocho pointed to Lumatac as the one who mostly dealt with the Filipinos who applied for skilled worker jobs offered by WHT for more than a year in 2018 and 2019.

“Nothing to do with it,” Biscocho replied to most of the queries by Chau as he cited pieces of evidence and situations culled from the volumes of documents gathered from the trial.

When asked who handled a job application, made a statement, or communicated online with the alleged victims of the scam, the defendant would say “it was Nympha” or “it was Lennis.”

The seven witnesses earlier narrated to the court how they were enticed to apply for the purported jobs by WHT. But when six months passed and they still had no visa, they began to suspect they were scammed.

The trial continues tomorrow.

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