At least 60 individuals have already sought legal assistance from the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) after falling victim to fake job opportunities in Italy.
Ma. Teresita Daza, DFA spokesperson, said that the Philippine Consulate in Italy is currently assisting those who filed complaints against a company involved in the fraudulent activity.
Daza, in a statement, identified the company as Alpha Assistenzia.
The number of victims now stands at 221, Daza said.
Earlier on Monday, the Department of Migrant Workers (DMW) disclosed that several companies were charging job applicants exorbitant fees in exchange for supposed opportunities in Italy.
The fee, supposedly for placement and consultancy, could go as high as 3,000 euros or P180,000, according to DFA.
DFA Assistant Secretary Paul Cortes said in an interview Tuesday that some victims even sold their properties, such as houses, land and cars, to be able to afford the fees.
But it turned out, the jobs offered were actually non-existent, according to various Philippine agencies investigating the matter.
“The Consulate also interviewed a key witness yesterday whose name was among those used in filing work permit applications,” DFA said.
“The Consulate is also looking into other cases of fraud being committed by Filipinos against fellow Filipinos, such as those involving airline tickets, work permit conversions, and citizenship applications,” it added.