Iloilo police warn public against ‘rent-tangay’ scheme

By Jennifer P. Rendon

A con called “rent-tangay” that has been prevalent in Luzon has apparently made its way to Iloilo.

Colonel Joeresty Coronica, Iloilo City police chief, warned the public to scrutinize documents presented by those seeking to rent or sell vehicles.

“If it’s too good to be true, it probably is. They should not take things at face value,” he said.

A rent-sangla scam, also known as a rent-tangay scam, is a confidence trick that emerged in the Philippines around 2017.

A person presents himself as someone who wants to rent a vehicle. Once the car owner or rental business agrees, the car is sold off or pawned to an unsuspecting buyer.

In Iloilo, the scam affected a policeman and his wife as the biggest victims. It started with a couple renting a 2023 red Toyota Vios sedan from a rent-a-car company based in Sta. Barbara, Iloilo.

The transaction was sealed with the owner and the couple meeting at a hotel in Jaro, Iloilo City.

When the rent period ended, the owner demanded the vehicle’s return. It took a while for her clients to respond, but they eventually revealed the vehicle’s location.

The owner was directed to Iloilo City Police Station 4 in the Molo district.

Together with members of ICPS 3, the owner filed a complaint.

Captain Gimel Acuesta, ICPS 4 chief, said his police personnel and his wife promptly returned the vehicle upon realizing they had been duped.

According to the policeman, his wife saw an online post of a car for sale. She was lured into buying the car, which was offered at P450,000.

The couple negotiated and agreed on P365,000. Acuesta said they sold their old vehicle to cover the new vehicle’s cost.

“The scammers simply went off with P365,000,” he added.

A rigorous check revealed that the policeman and his wife were given fictitious official receipts and certificates of registration (OR/CR).

During a follow-up investigation, Acuesta said the car rental owner learned that the identification card presented by the suspects was also fake.

However, their identities were known after they presented a real identification card at the hotel where they stayed.

Acuesta confirmed with police authorities from Dasmariñas, Cavite, that the suspects are from Cavite and believe they are working with local residents in Iloilo.

The policeman and his wife plan to file a case for estafa against the suspects. They also appealed to the car rental owner to pursue a case for carnapping against them.

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