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Filipina DH, resident tagged in massive recruitment scam

17 September 2021

By Daisy CL Mandap 

Bote's Facebook account which she used to chat with applicants

Two Filipinas, one a domestic helper who works in Sai Wan Ho and the other, a resident, have been tagged as key players in the recruitment of around 60 Filipinos for non-existent jobs as foreign domestic helpers and gardeners in Hong Kong.

The two have been named in numerous statements executed by alleged victims, believed to have netted the operators at least Php3million (around $500,000) since January this year.

Informed about the complaints, Consul General Raly Tejada immediately pledged to look into the case and confer with relevant authorities like the Hong Kong Police and the Philippine Overseas Employment Agency, if necessary.

He is also considering issuing an advisory to warn Filipinos about the illicit operation.

He made his pledge after being told of at least one case filed by a Filipina DH in Hong Kong, Maricris Vargas, who claimed to have lost a total of $23,298 (Php150,000) which she sent to the scammers in five installments between January and February this year.

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Vargas said she was lured into the scam by a friend, fellow Filipina DH named Ruby Ariz Bote (with Facebook name Yhenchen Ruby Zira) who allegedly promised to work on processing a work visa for her relatives in the Philippines if she paid Php150,000.

Vargas' police statement shows a breakdown of the money she sent to Gregory

“As I did not have enough money, I asked my relatives in the Philippines to remit the amount to (Bote) for me. Bote then gave a name to me for the remittance: Marilyn Pascua Gregory.”

Most of the other complainants in the case also have receipts of remittances to Hong Kong made through Western Union in the name of Gregory.


According to chat messages sent them by Bote and other alleged members of the recruitment gang, Gregory is a Hong Kong resident who lives in Hibiscus Park in Kwai Chung, and hails from Tacurong, Sultan Kudarat.

Bote, whose Hong Kong address has been given by Vargas as block 2, Grand Promenade in Sai Wan Ho, is said to also live in Sultan Kudarat.

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Two of her fellow recruiters named in most of the complaints also hail from Mindanao, but in General Santos City – Jennifer Rocacurva, who works as a DH in Singapore, and Christine Joy Smith, who claims to be a resident of the United Kingdom.

Another complainant who named both Bote and Gregory in her statement to the Consulate lives all the way in Kyrgyztan, although she also used to work as a FDH in Hong Kong.


Angela Rojas said she sent a total of Php135,000 ($21,000) to Gregory at Bote’s behest. Rojas said she trusted Bote because they were neighbors in Palimbang, Sultan Kudarat.

Bote allegedly told Rojas about the supposed “urgent” and VIP recruitments in Hong Kong, and asked her to advance the placement fees for two of their friends back in the Philippines as they didn’t have money.

Tunghayan ang isa na namang kwentong Dream Love

Rojas sent the equivalent of Php100,000 to Gregory on Feb 12, and on the next day, instructed her brother-in-law to send another Php35,000 to pay for the processing fee of another applicant.

Pinamadali kasi kami ni Ruby ng padala dahil lahat daw ng mga post nila na hiring ay may ready job order na,” said Rojas (Ruby told us to send the money quickly because all their hirings already have job orders).

But after sending the money, Rojas said she learned that all the information given them by Bote was false. For one, she said, the applicants were told by staff in the clinic where they were told to go for a medical check-up that they didn’t know any of their recruiters.

Some of the applicants were told at this medical clinic that they had no scheduled check-up

Lahat ng schedule na binigay nila hindi natuloy. Nag set ulit sila ng medical examination pero hindi natuloy. Nag set din ng training, hindi natuloy. Lahat ito sa loob ng dalawang buwan, samantalang ang sabi nila ay two months lang makakaalis ang mga tao,” said Rojas.

(All the schedules given them did not push through. They set another date for the medical examination, but it didn’t push through again. The same happened for the training they were supposed to get. All of this happened in two months, when they were assured they could leave in two months).

A more graphic statement was made by an applicant who went through the ordeal of being told to go to Manila, ostensibly for medical check-up and training, and ended up having to look for his own accommodation while he waited in vain for the promised services.

Rogelio Mendoza said he learned about the job offers in Hong Kong from Vargas, who is his sister-in-law.

Tiwala ako dahil nandyan ang hipag ko sa Hong Kong,” he said (I was confident because my sister-in-law is in Hong Kong).

He said he and his brother-in-law each sent Php50,000 on Jan 23 to Gregory on Bote’s instructions.

On Feb 20, the two were told to go to Manila, and were promised that somebody would pick them up. But nobody showed up, so they were forced to stay in a hotel.

The next day, they were told to go to a place in Quezon City, but they were shocked to see it so crowded that they called up Ruby to complain. They ended up fighting with her so they decided to just to go to his brother-in-law’s relative in Manila to ask to be sheltered.

On Feb 22 they were told to go to a clinic for their medical check-up but were told that they didn’t have an appointment, and their supposed Hong Kong agent, a Madam Shirley Leung, was not known to any of the staff there.

A Madam Leung is threatening to sue the complainants and The SUN over the expose

By that time, Bote, Rocacurva and Smith had already blocked him from their chat group, so in anger, Mendoza said he posted on Facebook about the jobs scam, and called for his money to be given back.

Nang ma post ko sila noong May 18, 2021 ay bigla silang naglabasan at panay ang mura nila sa akin. Tapos nangakong ibabalik ang pera ko pero kakasuhan daw ako dahil sa pinost ko. Pinaglalaban pa rin nilang hindi sila manloloko,” he said.

(After I posted about them on May 18, 2021, they all suddenly came out to swear at me. But then they said they would give back my money but threatened to sue me because of my post. They were still insisting that they were not scammers).

Mendoza said the three returned only part of his money because they still took out more than Php4,000 from what he sent them.

He said he wants them held to account still because not only does he have to keep paying 15% interest on the money he borrowed to send to them, he also had to suffer the humiliation of being given the run-around and called names by the illegal recruiters.

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