MANILA - (UPDATED) A businessman accused of having ties to the illegal drug trade has been placed on the immigration watchlist.
The Department of Justice on Monday said it has issued an immigration lookout bulletin order (ILBO) on Peter Lim, a suspected drug lord tagged by President Rodrigo Duterte.
The ILBO was dated July 11, according to Undersecretary Erickson Balmes.
Unlike a Hold Departure Order (HDO), an ILBO does not restrict a person from leaving the country, but only directs the Bureau of Immigration to be on the lookout for the person of interest and verify his status.
Bureau of Immigration (BI) spokesperson Antonette Mangrobang said the ILBO was in connection with a criminal case against Lim for violation of Republic Act (RA) No. 9165, also known as the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act.
Last December, the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) said Lim, who hails from Central Visayas, is the same person referred to by Duterte in a drug matrix he released on July 7. Lim met with the president to deny his involvement in the illegal drug trade.
The NBI was tasked by Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre II to conduct a probe on Lim.
"We were able to establish that the Peter Lim who appeared before the President and the NBI is one and the same Peter Lim and the he is the same Peter Lim who is the alleged drug lord of Cebu. The second part of the investigation, as to whether or not Peter Lim is indeed a drug lord, that is ongoing,” NBI spokesperson Ferdinand Lavin said last December.
The DOJ has yet to receive the NBI’s findings.