This is sad sad news and I am not very proud about it, but the people must know and should be aware and therefore, take extra care.
This Batchoy Man's Auntie herself fell victim to a member of the Budol Budol gang last week at the Iloilo Terminal Market.
Here's how it went.
My tita would usually go to the Terminal (Super) Market to attend to some business. She has a small time lending biz there. One lady called to her and approached her. The lady then asked her if she was the mother of my cousin (lets just call him junjun). She then said she was junjun's classmate's mom. With that, she made chika with my tita, then later on, said that she needed to go to a hardware store to buy some construction supplies, since she was building her house here in Iloilo. I do not know why my tita agreed to accompany her. When they got to the said hardware, someone from there told them that in the other hardware store, what they wanted was cheaper by a few thousand pesos. Since the lady said she was buying 8pcs of them, the guy then said that he was an agent of the other hardware store, and that he would split the savings up with my tita.
Before going to that other hardware store, the lady then said that she would just check that other hardware store later as she was running late for another appointment. They went back to the van and the lady then said that she would just drop my tita off near where she lives as she has other things to attend to. She then told my tita if it was okay with her if she left her bag with my tita, along with the cash that she would use to purchase that construction material. She then told my tita to just take off her jewelry and place it in her own bag, (My tita had a bag of her own) to which she obliged. Then she got dropped off near where she lives.
When she arrived at their house, my tita proceeded to tell the wife of junjun to fix things up in the house as they had a visitor coming in a while. It was this lady she just met who said that she was the mother of jun jun's classmate. She said she was dropping by for a visit, also to be able to talk with jun jun as she wanted to help jun jun land a job in Dubai. Then, my other cousin noticed that tita was no longer wearing her jewelry, so she asked where they were. Tita said it's in her bag. Suspecting something fishy, (as tita rarely takes off her jewelry) she looked at the bag. She asked her whose bag was this other one, and tita told her. She was even wondering why that lady would entrust her bag to her. After careful search, everything inside tita's bag was gone. In place were rolls of grade 3 pad paper bundled up, and fake hundred peso bills on top and at the bottom of the bundles to look like cash. Gone too were tita's jewelry, and cash amounting to more than 80K pesos.
I have a few questions in my mind regarding this story. There are a few inconsistencies with her story, but I would blame that to panic and shock on my tita's part. The experience is traumatic for her, and she must have been thinking about her story's believabilit too. My tita is the street smart city dwelling girl, and not easily beguiled. Why would she fall victim to such a ploy? However, truth of the matter is, they were able to cart away her valuables and cash. There is the bag, too, to prove her story true. There is of course the factor that these crooks are said to be using hypnosis or something mumbo jumbo to net in their prey. Whether that is true or not, there is one thing to be realized in this story.
THE BUDOL BUDOL GANG IS IN ILOILO AND EVERYONE MUST BE CAREFULL AND VIGILANT.
LET THIS BE A WARNING TO EVERYONE!
Oh, and yes...
Happy Valentines, everyone!