Filipino duo caught falsely soliciting donations for typhoon

Two Filipino women have been arrested for allegedly falsely soliciting donations for victims of Typhoon Haiyan by posing as volunteers for a charity.

The two women, presenting themselves as volunteers with JC Society, were arrested on Thursday while busking for money at a petrol station in Udon Thani. The suspects admitted to earning about Bt5,000 (S$196) per day from donations, police said.

Minerva Makapili Bedana, 32, and Juanna Espelita Joyos, 23, also face the charge of working illegally.

Police say they found the women with five fake JC Society stickers, a list of donors and Bt2,070 in cash. They will face further charges depending on complaints lodged by people who were duped, police said.

The women have admitted to the crime, saying they spent some of the money on themselves and sent some back home. The suspects, who are under police custody, entered Thailand on a tourist visa and have not overstayed.

Immigration police are also on the hunt for other foreign nationals running similar scams as part of a crackdown on swindlers.