Table of Contents & Sample Extract from the Book
Here is the Table of Contents listing the chapters along with an extract from the book.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
ABOUT THIS BOOK
PART 1 THE BASICS! A NEW LOOK AT THE PROBLEM!
RINGS AND RULES
ATTITUDE + AWARENESS = AVOIDANCE
ANATOMY OF A SITUATION
LEARNING THE LINGO
LONG HAIRED BODYGUARDS
WHEN PUSH COMES TO SHOVE!
PART TWO – SERIOUS SITUATIONS CASH OR CHARGE, SIR?
WHO’S GUARDING THE GUARDS?
FALLING AFOUL OF THE LAW
DID YOU EVER SEE “MIDNIGHT EXPRESS”?
GETTING OUT OF DODGE AND BACK TO KANSAS, DOROTHY!
THE LIFE SAVED MAY BE YOUR OWN!
THE PATTER OF TINY FEET!
PROOF OF LIFE
PUTTING THINGS IN PERSPECTIVE
PART THREE – COMMON THREATS AND SITUATIONS MECHANIZED DEATH
WHERE ARE YOUR WATCHERS?
THAT’S NASTY! STD’S AND WHAT TO DO.
IMODIUM BE THY NAME!
NICE SHOTGUN, DAD!
THE BUTLER DIDN’T DO IT!
WEARING OUT YOUR WELCOME
YOU WON’T GET ME ON THAT THING!
FORT APACHE – YOUR HOME!
DIRTY BUSINESS – THE ONLY KIND!
READ THIS IF NOTHING ELSE!
GOVERNMENT TRAVEL WARNINGS & HANDY LINKS USA
POLICE TELEPHONE DIRECTORY
SAMPLE EXTRACTS FROM THE BOOK
FALLING AFOUL OF THE LAW
So what should you do if you are arrested for some reason? First question I ask is who arrested you? If it is the NBI it still might be a scam but it will be an elaborate, often politically motivated one and these blokes don’t mess about. They are professionals and they will not come cheap. On balance I would say you have done something illegal and you are in deep trouble.
My advice is to say nothing until you have a lawyer present and make it a good one! Then follow their advice but I would not admit to anything I didn’t do just to get a lighter sentence. Sentences can be appealed but if you have admitted guilt, even if it was a plea bargain or under duress, the fact is you are guilty. You just said you were so anything you say after that will sound hollow and pretty pathetic.
Withstanding interrogation is a skillset that they teach in the Army to at risk individuals such as special forces, aircrew, intelligence and military police as these people are more likely to have information of value to the enemy than the average infantryman or tank crewman. Having been trained in resisting interrogation, as well as interrogating suspects and with some experience in the topic I can tell you it is easier to interrogate than it is to resist. Even without physical methods being used. So forget playing hero and simply get professional help, you will need it.
If the cops arresting you are local PNP and of low rank then the sooner you can talk your way out or bribe your way clear the better and cheaper it will be. The higher up the ladder you go the more expensive it becomes or the more likely you are in serious trouble and trying to bribe the officer will get you thrown away for longer!
Again, stay calm. Say as little as possible. Don’t give them anything to work with. Smile a lot and be their friend with much professing of willingness to assist and so on. Do not be belligerent and never tell them you know your rights. You have no rights other than those they allow you to exercise! I can recall at the Bureau of Immigration actually hearing an irate Kano say very loudly “But I’m an American dammnit! I know my rights!” You could tell by the looks the Filipino officials gave each other they were going to give him a lesson in just whose country he was in and precisely what rights he did have! Bureau of Immigration by the way are one of the better government departments I have ever had to deal with. I found them to always be professional and fairly courteous but at the very least honest and above board.
If you think it is going past the point of a shake down by a couple of low rank cops, then shut up and get a lawyer! There is due process of law in the Philippines albeit rather crowded and slow so be patient and keep the faith. And hire a great lawyer!
You should also ask for your Consulate to assist you as best they can. Often there is little they can do other than call friends or family back home for you, but they will let the locals know someone out there knows you are inside. They can’t supply money or lawyers but they might be able to negotiate on your behalf over minor matters. Worth a call!
People do get set up and wind up in the local jail but usually it is their own fault. At best (or worst) they did something that pissed someone off and they knew it might do that. Often greed is involved, or lust or one of the seven deadly sins. Most people bring it upon themselves either through arrogance or ignorance or sheer stupidity. So don’t be rude, dumb or an idiot and this chapter should be just for information purposes only!
DIRTY BUSINESS – THE ONLY KIND!
Advice I received and should have heeded when I migrated to the Philippines was that one should live there for at least a year before even contemplating investing in any kind of business or real estate. I actually bought a block of land before I moved there permanently and managed to sell it at a tidy profit a few years later. By then the electricity and water ran past the block and made it a far more attractive proposition than when I agreed to let my then fiancé purchase it.
I took risk with buying that block and fortunately for me I not only did well out of it, I also learnt a lot about the real estate game in the Philippines and included what I had learnt in my book about that topic. The Philippines Property Primer contains everything you need to know to keep yourself safe when looking at buying, renting or leasing real property in the Philippines. It isn’t within the scope of this book to repeat that valuable information so if you are thinking of buying property, buy that book!
If you are considering investing in a business venture, read my other book Making A Living In The Philippines. That volume goes into great detail about buying a business, investing and even getting a job while in the Philippines. There are a lot of traps for new players and forewarned is forearmed.
In a nutshell, DON’T. Filipinos rip off each other with scarcely a second thought so a newly arrived Kano with money that should be theirs is just too tempting a target. Worse still are the Kano’s who will try and beat the locals to your money! I have had several people actually say the words “we gotta talk!” meaning they saw me as an opportunity to get them out of their holes.
When you are sitting back, chilling out and relaxing in a bar with readily available young female companions on tap there is an understandable tendency amongst us middle aged men (and older) to want to make it last. To find some way we can stay here forever and, like Peter Pan, never have to grow up or go back to that place from whence we came where life isn’t so wonderful for us.
Along comes a friendly, experienced fellow countryman who has lived the good life here for some time and is just loving it! What’s more, they have found a perfect life/work balance that will make a lot of money for them. And you because they are willing to let you in on the deal because, well, hey, they like you! Isn’t that reason enough? They have the experience, the idea, the contacts everything. All you have to put in is some cash. And you have plenty of that, right? Convert those dollars or pounds or euros to this funny money they use here and you are rolling in it!
So you now find yourself a partner in a viable business venture in paradise and your mind races as you contemplate your good fortune. I knew one bloke who had handed over thousands and was eager to return to the USA so he could withdraw more money and even sell up some real estate holdings he had so he could pour more money into the new venture. He wouldn’t say what it was as he had been sworn to secrecy and he didn’t want to risk everyone getting in on the deal and ruining it.
I asked him a few questions such as how well did he know his new partners and so on and he replied he had met them a week ago but had been introduced to their families and felt like he had known them forever. Oh, and don’t worry, he knows he can trust them because they are Christians like he is. Well hey, that would be guarantee enough for me… NOT! Suffice to say the Filipino Christians he handed thousands of dollars over to lost the lot and then got more off him before he finally wised up.
What was the business venture? Would you believe a gold mine? Yes, a gold mine. Classic! This man had been here for a three week vacation to meet his chat cam girlfriend, was introduced to her parents and they liked him so much so quickly they decided to let him bankroll their family gold mine. He wasn’t all stupid though, he had asked the Kano who owned the chat cam service where he had met his fiancé if they were good people and could they be trusted. The kano backed them up 100%, which you would expect since he was sleeping with the fiancé and half of the other fifteen chat cam girls who worked for him!
This isn’t included in the scam chapter because the family really did have a goldmine, a registered mining lease and a duly registered company to mine that lease. Everything they said was true, to a degree. They just needed an injection of cash to get the mine operating. However once the cash was injected it was soaked up by corrupt officials with their hands out, poor capital equipment purchases and several other factors.
It could just as easily have been a scam. The alarm bells ring the same tone in my ears. Of course our hero was greedy. Greedy and gullible. He wanted to believe the positive side of things and ignore the possibility that the goldmine venture might fail. He thought by checking out the company and the lease with the appropriate authorities such as the Securities Exchange Commission and the Board of Investments that he had it all covered. As I said, the goldmine and the mining company were actually legitimate but that didn’t protect him from incompetence, corruption and the reality of doing business in the Third World.
I have been offered shares in bars, dive shops, resorts, taxi and bus companies and all kinds of legitimate ventures. If they are going concerns then they won’t be bargains and there will be a genuine and plausible reason for sale. Remember what I said at the beginning of this book, if it seems too good to be true then it is! There are good business opportunities to be had in the Philippines but if you are reading this book I doubt you are in a position to take advantage of them. They require millions of dollars, solid upscale connections and a lot of expertise. Anything less than that and you really need to be very, very careful.
Heed the advice I didn’t take seriously enough: don’t get involved in any business or real estate venture until you have lived in the country for a full year. You can read how I lost US $7,000 in a failed bar and resort venture through no fault of my own other than not wanting to miss a possible golden opportunity in Making A Living In The Philippines. When you are newly arrived the sharks will smell the blood and come around looking for an opportunity to feed. Keep your fingers and toes well out of the water until they get bored and swim off!