Agnes Tuballes, the alleged recruiter of the murdered Pinay OFW in Kuwait, Joanna Demafelis (29) whose body was found in a freezer, has turned herself into police custody last March 1 according to PNP sources.
Tuballes is currently under the supervision of the Philippine National Police’s Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG).
The surrender came after the President’s instruction to the NBI to look for Demafelis’ local recruiters.
Suspected Local Recruiter of Murdered OFW in Kuwait Surrenders to PNP
The late Demafelis had been recruited by local agency, Our Lady of Mt. Carmel Global E-Human Resources Inc., before she was signed with a foreign recruitment agency, Fadilah Farz Kaued Al Khodor Recruitment Office, which is presently under the POEA watchlist for an unresolved case. The local agency had reportedly been shut down in 2016 due to recruitment violations, which was also around the time when Demafelis’ family had lost contact with Joanna in Kuwait.
Demafelis’ employers, identified as Lebanese Nader Essam Assaf and his Syrian wife, Mona, who are the primary suspects to the Filipina’s murder, had already been taken in custody by authorities in Lebanon last Feb. 23.
According to Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque, the President wanted to review the role of Demafelis’ recruiters to this unfortunate turn of events. Moreover, the recruitment agencies who have processed Demafelis’ work documents, and job placement for overseas work, could be held liable for the Filipina’s untimely death since they were not able to properly monitor her general condition in the Gulf State, as explained by the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA).
Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III echoed the President’s decision to keep the labour ban on Kuwait despite the arrest of the two murder suspects of Joanna Demafelis’ death in the Gulf State. He further explained that the ban will remain until justice is given to Joanna, and until the OFWs are assured of their protection when working overseas.
Kuwait has also not yet acted on the Philippine’s appeal for the development of a bilateral agreement which will prohibit Kuwaiti nationals, especially the employers, from confiscating the workers’ important documents such as their passport, and moving an OFW’s place of work to other than what was stated in their contracts, said Bello.
Here’s a short video clip on the news update: