Crime: The seven immigration officials that the Phuentsholing dungkhag court last month sentenced to a non-compoundable prison term of three years each are released on bail by the Chukha district court.

Each of them paid a year’s bail security amount of Nu 45,000 on September 21.

Of the seven officials, two assistant immigration inspectors, Chogyal Wangdi and Kunzang Tshering were sentenced to three years prison term on non-compoundable grounds. They were both charged for tampering with public documents, embezzlement, and bribery.

The data manager Karma Tshering, immigration inspector Sonam Jamtsho and assistant immigration inspectors Thuktenla, Kunzang Thinely and Sangay Tenzin were also convicted for “tampering of public documents” and sentenced to three years non-compoundable prison terms.

The officials had tampered information in the immigration system to establish bogus receipts to aid expatriate labourers on minimising the penalty when the work permits had expired. The verdict stated that the defendants, by faking the receipts, had undervalued the penalty amount that the expatriates were supposed to pay.

For instance, they tampered the expired work permits and put fake receipts and removed the expired penalty from the immigration system. They received a bribe of Nu 2,000 – Nu 10,000 for waiving off penalties from the expatriate labourers.

Dzongkhag court officials said the case would conclude by November.

“They will have to attend the hearing as and when they are summoned,” a Chukha court official said.

Rajesh Rai, Phuentsholing