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Terror’s big business

For half a century, the revolutionary movement thrived since its members simply could not walk away from their profitable extortion activities even if many wanted to.

Using human rights and other issues raised against the government, the communist movement and its allies, who had hounded the anti-narcotics campaign of the government, have been running a lucrative racket over the years.

Results of National Intelligence Coordinating Agency (NICA) investigations bared how P5.8 billion flowed from foreign donors to the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army-National Democratic Front (CPP-NPA-NDF) and their legal fronts between 2016 and 2018.

For years, several high profile rights organization mainly in Europe had funneled money into left-wing groups.

These groups overseas were influenced by civic organizations run by the communists and their partners in media who are many in the international circle.

CPP-NPA-NDF mainly rely on foreign financiers since Filipino groups know their true colors and are too familiar with their schemes, which are all publicly rejected.

The amount is aside from the Rebolusyunaryong Buwis Ukol sa Kaaway na Uri, or revolutionary tax extorted from businesses.

NICA officials noted that, aside from funding the campaign of the group, which had made known its intention to take over the reins of government, the funds are also used to sustain the lavish lifestyle of the leaders of the communist movement and officials of the front organizations.

Bayan Muna Partylist Representative Carlos Zarate, for instance, was alleged by President Rodrigo Duterte in his last State of the Nation Address of using money collected by the movement to finance his son’s education in Poland.

For half a century, the revolutionary movement thrived since its members simply could not walk away from their profitable extortion activities even if many wanted to.

A NICA head recounted that he was told by a high-ranking official of the guerillas that they can’t change their lifestyle and that the movement has provided them a livelihood.

The Anti-Money Laundering Council had discovered at least 18 foreign non-governmental organizations that have been the source of financing of the communist groups.

AMLC deputy director for financial crime investigation Emet Manantan said currencies deposited in the front groups’ accounts are in euros and US dollars. The transactions, Manantan said, exceeded the threshold amount for money laundering.

“These were intelligence information which was shared already to our foreign counterparts, and these 18 were validated as existing transactions,” Manantan revealed.

“There is money in terrorism, very huge in fact. And it’s very unfortunate that probably with or without the knowledge of the donors, their donations go to these terror schemes,” he added.
The practice has been to allocate 60 percent of the collections to the armed movement, while 40 percent go to the front organizations.

Four cases were filed against local fronts that are conduits for the financial assistance to the CPP-NPA-NDF, according to AMLC.

The AMLC said it froze P22 million in total worth of assets of communist terrorist groups.

The anti-dirty money office is also running after the rebel groups’ huge assets that include 126 hectares of land and eight vehicles.

One of the biggest problems of the government is that those countries, which are saying that not enough is being done to stop terrorism and money laundering in the country, are the countries that host groups that are financially sustaining the communists led by Joma Sison. — TDT

 

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