MANILA — Bureau of Immigration (BI) personnel have been authorized to handcuff unruly and violent persons at international airports and seaports nationwide.
In an order, Immigration Commissioner Siegfred Mison allows BI airport supervisors to use handcuffs in such extraordinary situations to prevent rowdy passengers from hurting anyone, as well as disrupting airport operations.
He also instructed BI personnel to exercise maximum tolerance when encountering disorderly and violent conduct by a traveler at the point of entry and departure, stressing that he will not tolerate the unnecessary use of force.
“I will have any immigration officer handcuffed, too, if he is found using excessive force,” the BI chief said.
Meanwhile, Atty. Elaine Tan, BI spokesperson, explained that plastic handcuffs will be provided to BI personnel.
“Before, our officers do not have handcuffs. They are only using hands to pacify or calm down travelers/passengers,” she said, adding that such individuals are taken to holding areas so as not to disrupt operations.
“They will be using handcuffs on extreme or extra ordinary circumstances,” Tan added.
The order was issued in connection with the incident involving a tourist from Beijing, who broke into hysterics and turned wild during inspection by a BI intelligence officer last month.