BOC opens first security warehouse for centralized inventory of seized goods
Robie de Guzman • September 3, 2020 • 354
MANILA, Philippines – The Bureau of Customs (BOC)-Port of Cagayan de Oro announced it has opened a security warehouse and auction house for shipments seized from various ports in the country.
In a statement Thursday, the BOC said the security warehouse and auction house, which was inaugurated on August 31, is the first of its kind in the country.
The facility will house and secure confiscated goods from various ports of entry in Northern Mindanao, namely Port of Cagayan de Oro, Ozamiz Subport, Iligan Subport, and Mindanao Container Terminal in Tagoloan, Misamis Oriental, the bureau added.
It also aims to centralize the inventory of seized goods such as minerals, cigarettes, clothing products, cars and other goods subject for condemnation or auction.
The BOC expressed hope that the establishment of a security warehouse and auction house will improve the collection of government revenues from seized goods and will also help ease the process of BOC auction.
The agency also revealed that for the first time, an online auction will be held online to promote faceless transactions among interested bidders.
The BOC said the move is part of its efforts to continuously adopt measures to improve collection of lawful revenues in order to help fund government projects and programs amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
MANILA, Philippines – Authorities intercepted another smuggled shipment of party drug ecstasy worth P1.8 million in Pasay City.
The shipment, which contains 980 pieces of ecstasy pills, were found in a parcel misdeclared as “samples” at the Central Mail Exchange Center.
The Bureau of Customs (BOC)-Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) seized the shipment with the help of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) and Inter-Agency Drug Interdiction Task Group.
The package was shipped by a certain “U Janssen” from Netherlands and consigned to a certain “Joey S. Ramos Jr.” from Malate, Manila.
The BOC said the party drugs were found after the parcel was subjected to X-Ray scanning and 100% physical examination.
The examination yielded three vacuum sealed pouches containing different colors of pills – gray, turquoise, and orange pills – that were concealed inside a brown envelope.
Field tests conducted by authorities confirmed that the seized Tablets were indeed Methylenedioxy-methamphetamine (MDMA) or commonly known as ecstasy.
The BOC said the contraband was turned over to the PDEA on Thursday for profiling and case build-up against the importers and other personalities involved for violation of the Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002 in relation to Section 1401 of the Customs Modernization and Tariff Act.
MANILA, Philippines – Around 21 tons of unsafe and hazardous goods were destroyed in a facility in Trece Martires, Cavite, the Bureau of Customs (BOC)-Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) said on Monday.
In a statement, the BOC said the items, which included unregistered vape products, medicines and other supplies, were destroyed on Sept. 9.
The vape products were seized for lack of necessary importation permits from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the bureau added.
Vape products are used for inhalation of vapor created by an electronic cigarette and other similar devices. These items have cartridges filled with liquid that usually contains nicotine, flavorings ad chemicals.
The importation and use of vape products were highly regulated by the FDA in view of its noted health hazards, while the importation of unregistered vape products was prohibited under Republic Act No. 11467.
The BOC-NAIA similarly condemned expired food supplies, dietary supplements, medicines, medical kits and devices, glutathione products which were also imported without the necessary FDA permit.
These products can pose health risks if not disposed properly, the bureau said.
Part of the condemned goods last September 9 were other regulated items such as animal feeds, cements, electrical items, bulbs and batteries that were imported without necessary clearances.
The BOC said it will continue to check unsafe and hazardous goods arriving into the country without the proper approval and safety standards clearance to protect consumers and to ensure that only products certified by regulatory agencies with necessary permits are released in the country’s ports of entry.
MANILA, Philippines – The Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) and the Bureau of Customs (BOC) have agreed to enhance their cooperation on border control, anti-smuggling and other customs fraud.
This is through the signing of a memorandum of agreement (MOA) on Thursday for the joint manning and operation of 20 newly-procured fast patrol boats of the BOC.
In a statement, the PCG said that under the MOA, Coast Guard commandant Admiral George Ursabia and Customs Commissioner Rey Leonardo Guerrero have agreed to work together for the efficient utilization and navigation of these 12-meter floating assets for the performance of law enforcement functions to uphold security, peace, and order within the maritime jurisdiction of the Philippines.
Under the MOA, the BOC shall have the authority to deploy the fast patrol boats for law enforcement missions, while the PCG shall share its technical expertise in operating and navigating said floating assets and ensure that knowledge and skills are efficiently transferred to BOC personnel.
In an event of natural calamity or national emergency, the PCG, upon proper coordination with the BOC, may utilize the fast patrol boats in conducting search and rescue (SAR) operations and responding to maritime incidents.
Each fast boat shall be manned by a total of nine crew members, composed of five BOC personnel and four PCG non-officers, who satisfactorily completed the Small Boat Operation and Management Course.
While the PCG assists the BOC in maintaining the fast patrol boats, the BOC shall be responsible in allocating funds for the daily preventive maintenance of equipment or machines onboard, procurement of spare parts and other consumables, as well as dry docking and other repair activities.
“We are honored to further collaborate with the Bureau of Customs in deterring and preventing illegal activities in our country’s waters. Rest assured that we will pursue our commitment in keeping the Philippine maritime jurisdiction safe and secured,” Ursabia said.
“I look forward to the successful implementation of this agreement. I am grateful to the Philippine Coast Guard for assisting us in the enforcement of laws pertaining the border control, prevention of entry of smuggling, and other customs fraud that hinder the growth of our national economy,” Guerrero added.
The MOA took effect on September 10 and shall be referred in full force and effect for a period of five years.
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