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‘Lola’ in US$50M fake check flies home

11 February 2019

hang seng bank headquarters photos的圖片搜尋結果
Gosilatar tried to cash the fake US$50M check at Hang Seng bank's headquarters in Central
By Vir B. Lumicao

A 76-year-old Filipina tourist has flown home a day after a District Court judge freed her from than two years of detention for allegedly trying to cash a fake US$50 million check in a local bank.

The Consulate said Maria Ilao Gosilatar was deported by the Immigration Department on Jan 30 after a night’s stay at the Castle Peak Immigration Centre in Tai Lam, Tuen Mun.

She was escorted to the airport by two officers of the Consulate’s assistance to nationals section.

Judge Josiah Lam ordered Gosilatar freed on Jan 29 after the Justice Department approved the withdrawal of a charge of “using a false instrument” against her because of ill health.

She was supposed to undergo trial for allegedly attempting to cash the fake check at the Hang Seng Bank headquarters on Des Voeux Road Central on Dec 9, 2016.

Gosilatar and a local male accountant were arrested and charged in Eastern Court with “using a false instrument” for the botched bank transaction. There has been no word about the case against Gosilatar’s co-accused.

Her case was the second involving an attempt to cash a fake bank instrument in Hong Kong to be withdrawn by the prosecution since last September. But in the earlier case, the three defendants were acquitted for insufficient evidence.

The three –Elmer Soliman, his son Eric Jude and their lawyer friend Eliseo Martinez – walked free on Sept 18, three months after being arrested and detained for allegedly trying to cash a US$5 billion bank draft at HSBC last June.

In Gosilatar’s case, the court was told that the defendant had been diagnosed with brain tumor that was growing faster than expected. Doctors reportedly said she only had two years to live.

Gosilatar said in earlier hearings that the cheque was a donation to her Sta Maria, Bulacan-based charity foundation, the Mama Mary 2000 International Foundation, by an unnamed female donor.

The foundation was registered 2015 in Britain’s Companies House with Gosilatar as  chairman and a Quezon City-based couple as board directors.

But after about a year, the defendant told the court she had received a report from the Philippine police that she was a victim of a scamming syndicate.

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