BOC crushes smuggled cigarette-making machines, fake master cases

Robie de Guzman   •   November 18, 2019   •   314

MANILA, Philippines – Several units of smuggled cigarette manufacturing machines, fake cigarette master cases and other packaging materials were destroyed at the Port of Clark, the Bureau of Customs (BOC) said on Monday.

In a statement, the BOC said seven units of cigarette-making machines, one unit of plastic recycling machine, a manual lifter, a generator set, and a generator cooling system were crushed using a backhoe.

The agency said these items were seized last February 19 and forfeited last July 26 for violation of the Customs Modernization and Tariff Act (CMTA).

The BOC said the destruction of smuggled materials was part of its efforts to prevent illicit trade and customs fraud.

“The said activity sends a strong message to smugglers to stop their illegal business practices, shortchanging the government of the rightful revenues,” the agency said.

The BOC at the Port of Clark, meanwhile, said that on Tuesday, Nov. 19, two more sets of cigarette-making machines, one set of automatic strapping machine, plastic shredding facility, as well as 145 cigarette master cases, packaging materials, and tax stamps will also be destroyed.

The said items were confiscated last March 5, 2018, and forfeited last August 6 for violation of the CMTA, Intellectual Property Rights Law, National Tobacco Administration Circular No. 3-2014, BOC Memorandum Circular No. 15-2015 and 20-2006 and BIR Revenue Regulation No. 1-97.

Duterte denies appointing new Customs chief

Maris Federez   •   January 14, 2020

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte administers the oath of Bureau of Customs Commissioner Rey Guerrero during a ceremony at the Presidential Guest House in Davao City on October 30, 2018. KARL NORMAN ALONZO/PRESIDENTIAL PHOTO

MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Roa Duterte has denied rumors of appointing a new chief for the Bureau of Customs, now being headed by former Armed Forces of the Philippine (AFP) chief of staff, Retired Gen. Ray Leonardo Guerrero.

The President said, however, that they had been talking about other possible personalities who can head the BOC.

Duterte also said that he is satisfied with Guerrero’s performance despite continuing reports of corruption inside the bureau.

“I am satisfied with General Guerrero, and he stays there and there are still some complaints so I’ll talk to him. Lalo na ‘yong mga tao na sinabi ko na paalisin na niya, some of them are lingering there. Sabihin ko kay Jagger, alisin mo ‘yan kasi ‘yan ang mga tao who have been there for 20 years, puro corruption ang ginawa,” the chief executive said.

The President made the clarification after a news article claiming that he has replaced Guerrero as Customs chief was published in a broadsheet last week. — mbmf

Guerrero belies replacement rumor in Customs

Maris Federez   •   January 10, 2020

Bureau of Customs (BOC) Commissioner Rey Leonardo Guerrero

MANILA, Philippines — Bureau of Customs (BOC) Commissioner Rey Leonardo Guerrero on Friday (Dec. 10) stated that he has not received any order from President Rodrigo Roa Duterte for him to step down from his post.

This is after a news article was released in one broadsheet claiming that he is soon to be replaced as Customs chief.

“I would not want to comment further doon sa news article. Hintayin na lang natin kung ano ang guidance ng palasyo. And nag- usap na rin kami ni Secretary of Finance so I am just waiting for iyong guidance,” Guerrero said.

Guerrero said that he will stay in his position as long as he is being permitted to by the President.

“Reasons don’t matter. Sabi ko we serve at the pleasure of the President. I’m a presidential appointee. Anytime pwede akong tanggalin ng appointing authority,” he added.

Guerrero further said that he even met the President at the AFP-PNP command conference last Tuesday and the chief executive has not mentioned anything regarding his said replacement.

The Customs chief also said that he is not familiar with the name William Lima, the person that the newspaper mentioned to be replacing him.

Guerrero maintained that he will just wait for any instruction from the President.

In the meantime, he said, he will be pushing for the full automation of the Customs Bureau to totally eradicate corruption in the agency. — (from the report of Aiko Miguel) /mbmf

BOC seizes P200K worth of Kush weeds, liquid marijuana

Robie de Guzman   •   January 7, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – The Bureau of Customs-Ninoy Aquino International Airport (BOC-NAIA) on Tuesday said it has intercepted a shipment allegedly containing kush weeds and liquid marijuana with an estimated value of P200,000.

The BOC-NAIA said the shipment was confiscated at the Central Mail Exchange Center in Pasay City on Monday, January 6.

The parcel was intercepted by the bureau in coordination with the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency and NAIA Inter-Agency Drug Interdiction Task Group.

The shipment, which was declared to contain a pair of shoes and chocolate, was identified to have originated from California.

The parcel was subjected to further examination after authorities detected the scent it emitted which was similar to marijuana shipments previously intercepted by authorities.

It was found to contain four packs of suspected kush weeds and ten cartridges of liquid marijuana.

The shipment was consigned to a certain Xavier Martin Bulos from Sampaloc, Manila, who was arrested when he claimed the parcel.

The BOC said Bulos will face charges for violation of RA 9165 also known as the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002 in relation to RA 10863 or the Customs Modernization Tariff Act.

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