I’m talking about Candy*, my friendly neighbor. Last Friday, she left for the Immigration Bureau, after receiving notice of the supposed release of her visa. Having recently married a Japanese national, she was now eligible for permanent residency. Or so she thought.
For as the grapevine had it, she was detained upon arrival at the Bureau. Why? For contracting a fake marriage.
Because Candy is actually a “he”. But she looks, speaks, acts and dresses like a woman. She even has “boobies” to boot. In fact, she works as a bargirl in one of the clubs here.
But being an overstaying alien, she was forced to arrange a marriage with a Japanese acquaintance in order to legitimize her stay in Japan. This country has been her home for the last fifteen years and she doesn’t want to go back to the Philippines. Having saved enough to pay-off a partner, she went through what they call here as an “imitation” marriage. That of course, is not uncommon.
She once recalled to me how hard she tried to sport a masculine stance during the wedding. And she funnily recounted the many retakes they had to endure during the photo-sessions, as she simply looked more feminine than her “spouse”.
During the mandatory observation period, the “couple” lived together. And through all this time, Candy had to give her spouse the monthly fee for the marriage, and at the same time support her sustenance. But the immigration agents must have sensed the oddness of the arrangement. In their visit to the couple’s residence, they must have noticed her beautiful lady-like pictures on the wall and those of her erstwhile boyfriend.
Thus, the detention. Now Candy has to acquire the services of a lawyer (read: very expensive!) to get her out of the bind. But even if she gets legal representation, I am sure it would be difficult to disentangle her from the mess. All the physical evidence are against her. What the litigation may result to would just be the invalidation of her marriage, which could then signal her deportation to the Philippines.
And that would be very sad. Japan has become her home (she hasn’t been back to the Philippines since she went TNT), and she earns considerably well here. And just like any other overseas Pinoy, she supports her family in the Philippines. If she goes back to the Philippines, it will already be a strange place for her. For sure, she will just end up joining the long roster of Filipinos unable to find a job.
I wish her luck.