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May 31, 2017

Why Was Alvarene Invited Into Visa Ring?

Alvarene Burgess

But why was Alvarene Burgess recruited into the visa recommendation scheme? Was it because she had access to the top players? Committee Chair Aldo Salazar repeatedly asked, but Burgess’ answer remained the same: a conversation between the other players in the ring left her on the hook.

 

Alvarene Burgess, Whistleblower

“I am assuming that he and Mr. Chan had a conversation after we met for the first time; and he’s family, he knows me a lot; so he probably told Mr. Chan…”

 

Aldo Salazar, Chair, Senate Special Select Committee

“So he knew you a lot?”

 

Alvarene Burgess

“My cousin knew…we grew up together.”

 

Aldo Salazar

“No, Mr. Chan…the cousin?”

 

Alvarene Burgess

“You cannot confuse me, Mr. Chairman.”

 

Aldo Salazar

“I am not trying to confuse you.”

 

Alvarene Burgess

“I am explaining something.”

 

Aldo Salazar

“Listen: I may not be as bright as you; okay, I may be deluding myself. I may not be as smart as you, but I want to understand what you are saying. And I find it hard to believe that Mr. Chan would propose to a stranger, somebody he doesn’t know to go and see a Minister, and later on to pay two thousand dollars to that person; that is really the difficulty I am having.”

 

Alvarene Burgess

“OK; can I take it instead of 1-2-3, by A-B-C? (Laughter) I am not being smart, I am trying to explain something.”

 

Aldo Salazar

“Go ahead.”

 

Alvarene Burgess

“My cousin who knew me well, probably he and Mr. Chan engaged in a conversation after they met me, when I came with my neighbor, she brought me up here, being one of her recommenders. The two recommenders…”

 

Aldo Salazar

“For nationality?”

 

Alvarene Burgess

“…were me and my husband, and we had to come in person but my husband didn’t come. So I am assuming that my cousin and Mr. Chan engaged in a conversation after I left; hence the reason why I could have been called, two days afterwards, to come and meet Mr. Chan.”

 

Aldo Salazar

“Okay so it was after that that you came to meet Mr. Chan?”

 

Alvarene Burgess

“He asked me about if I wanted to make money; I didn’t make money that day. He asked me about making money and I mentioned to him about the people who I knew, and I would check with them first, and if it was okay then we would start working.”

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Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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