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NAHA — Okinawa police Tuesday arrested a 27-year-old Filipino who attempted to enter Japan using a forged U.S. military identification card.

The man, identified as John Michael Calatrava Nuqui, was handed over to Okinawa Prefectural Police on July 29 after immigration officers suspected that a U.S. military dependent identification card and a Philippines passport in his possession were fake, said a spokesman for the Fukuoka Immigration Bureau, Naha Office. He had arrived on a flight from Manila. He’s charged with violating Japan’s immigration law.

“Nuqui attempted to smuggle himself into Japan by using a forged U.S. military ID,” said Takeshi Azuma, spokesman for the immigration office. The man was identified on the identification card as a Navy dependent, Azuma said. He said the document was a forged copy of an old U.S. military dependent card that lacked the bar codes required on current ID cards.

A prefectural police spokesman said Nuqui told investigators he purchased the fake ID and Philippine passport from a broker in Manila for 300,000 pesos (about $5,360.)

Azuma said Nuqui was the third person caught in July trying to enter Okinawa illegally with a forged military ID. The other two were arrested July 1 and July 11. One such incident occurred in 2004, he added.

The man who attempted entry on July 1 had a legal passport and was deported immediately because it was his first attempt, Azuma said. On July 11, a 46-year-old Filipino was arrested after he was found to possess a fake military ID and passport. He also had a history of deportation from Japan, Azuma said.

“With a (U.S.) military ID, a visa is not required when you enter Japan from the Philippines. All you need is a military ID and a travel order, making it much easier for an illegal entrant to smuggle into the country,” he said.

“Military IDs are targeted by alien smugglers,” he said.

He said U.S. military officials on Okinawa confirmed the military ID Nuqui possessed had been forged.

Nuqui also had been deported in the past, a police spokesman said.

“He had worked in Nagoya from 1997 to 2004 to send money to his family in the Philippines,” he said. “In May in 2004, he was deported after his illegal stay was revealed. We believe he was planning to return to Nagoya.”


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