Isang bala ka lang: Netizens decry ‘laglag-bala’ incident

Rappler Social Media Team

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Isang bala ka lang: Netizens decry ‘laglag-bala’ incident
The arrest of a 56-year-old OFW for allegedly carrying a bullet on her way to Hong Kong triggers public outrage against Manila airport authorities

MANILA, Philippines – “Isang bala ka lang.”

The late Fernando Poe Jr’s famous line from the movie of the same title has been going the rounds on social media. Netizens have been sharing reports of a modus known as ‘laglag-bala’ or bullet planting that has been occuring at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA). (READ: ‘How to curb ‘laglag-bala’ modus and airport extortion‘)

The most recent incident that caused outrage on social media involved a 56-year-old overseas Filipino worker (OFW) named Gloria Ortinez. She was arrested and prevented from leaving the country for Hong Kong after authorities at NAIA 2 claimed to have found a bullet wrapped in red cloth inside her bag.

Ortinez has denied that the bullet was hers. Ortinez also said that she would never bring the bullet with her as she was well aware of Hong Kong’s strict security laws.

The arrest triggered public outrage, and netizens were quick to react on social media.


A lot of netizens expressed anger against authorities for NAIA’s poor security and failure to address the issue.






Some netizens are scared of falling victim to the scheme too.






Some also expressed their doubt that the OFW would dare bring a bullet.




Some politicians also decried the incident. Senatorial aspirant and longtime OFW advocate Susan Ople called for Ortinez’s release. She said it was clear that the longtime OFW was innocent, and that she should not face charges of illegal possession of ammunition. (Read: ‘Susan Ople calls for release of NAIA ‘bullet planting’ scam victim‘)

Bakit naman niya ilalagay sa alanganin ang kanyang trabaho sa Hong Kong para sa isang bala? Sa tagal na niya bilang isang OFW, alam na alam niya na bawal ito hindi lang sa ating batas kung hindi pati na sa batas ng Hong Kong,” Ople said.

(Why would she risk the job waiting for her in Hong Kong for one bullet? As a longtime OFW, she is quite aware that carrying ammunition is prohibited under Philippine and Hong Kong laws.)

What are your thoughts on the “laglag-bala” scheme? Have you experienced it too? Share your thoughts on


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