MANILA, PHILIPPINES – To protect the Filipino seafarers from scalpers offering fraudulent legal certificates, the Maritime Industry Authority (MARINA) and the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) presented to the media Mr. Malone Morales, 28, a two-year former MARINA employee under the Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping (STCW) – Surveillance Division, who is allegedly behind the faking of MARINA official signatures on the legal certificate needed for the processing of STCW certificates.

Morales was in connivance with another MARINA employee in getting hold of the seafarers’ contact numbers and, introducing himself as a lawyer, offering them his service for a P 10,000 to P 20,000 fee.

The MARINA, in cooperation with the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI), conducted an entrapment operation to catch Morales who instigated a number of Filipino seafarers to engage in fraudulent activities.

Morales was terminated this year after his alleged involvement in the leakage of questions and answers of marine officers licensure examination.

Morales is currently and will remain under the custody of the NBI.

Aside from Morales, other MARINA employees are under strict observation due to their alleged involvement in the processing of fake legal certificates needed for the issuance of STCW certificates and other MARINA issuances.