THE Bureau of Immigration (BI) yesterday released from its custody Sister Patricia Fox, an Australian missionary, a day after she was apprehended on orders of BI Commissioner Jaime Morente over reported violation of the conditions of her stay by engaging in political activities and anti-government demonstrations.
On recommendation of the BI legal division headed by lawyer Arvin Cesar Santos, the Australian nun was released for further investigation after it was established that she holds a valid missionary visa and is thus a properly documented alien.
Fox reportedly submitted her passport and other immigration documents showing that she was issued her missionary visa on October 15 last year and that the visa is valid until September 9 this year.
In his recommendation, lawyer Santos noted that while Fox was alleged to have taken part in protest actions by farmers in the past, she was not doing so at the time BI operatives apprehended her on Monday.
Santos said Fox is not covered by inquest proceedings as the latter will only apply to aliens arrested after being caught in flagrante violating immigration laws.
Under BI rules, Fox should undergo preliminary investigation to determine if deportation charges should be filed against her before the bureau’s board of commissioners, Santos further said.