Inquirer.net recently reported that agents from the Bureau of Immigration, the Presidential Anti-Corruption Commission and the National Police’s Integrity Monitoring and Enforcement arrested 277 Chinese nationals on September 11.
Grapefruit Services Inc. reportedly had already defrauded thousands of investors in mainland China, authorities said that they received a tip from the Chinese Embassy.
Initially, Immigration Commissioner Jaime Morente ordered the arrest of only four Chinese nationals but authorities caught 273 other suspects “in the act of conducting illegal online operations.”
Moreover, the Chinese government has canceled the passports of the arrested employees, making them illegal workers in the Philippines. The detained workers will be deported, stated in the report.
Cagayan Special Economic Zone
According to Inquirer.net’s unnamed source, Grapefruit is an authorized service provider of Golden Millennial Quickpay Inc. Ltd., an offshore cryptocurrency company licensed by the Cagayan Economic Zone Authority (CEZA).
CEZA is a government-owned corporation that supervises the Cagayan Special Economic Zone and Freeport. It is a special economic area in the northern part of the Philippines. The zone aims to attract foreign and local investment. Furthermore, the Philippine government began allowing cryptocurrency firms to operate there since April 2018.
Grapefruit was operating outside of the designated jurisdiction and also had some breaches on Philippine financial regulations, Inquirer.net stated.