P2.4M worth of smuggled cigarettes seized in Zamboanga

Robie de Guzman   •   October 2, 2019   •   649

MANILA, Philippines – Around 90 boxes of smuggled cigarettes estimated to be worth P2.4 million were seized in transit by the operatives of the Bureau of Customs (BOC) at the Port of Zamboanga last Saturday (Sept. 28).

The BOC said the smuggled cigarettes were intercepted aboard MJ Champion, a wooden watercraft locally known as “Jungkung” from Jolo, Sulu, during a joint operation in the waters off Istanbak in Lower Calarian, Zamboanga City.

BOC-Zamboanga District Collector Atty. Segundo Barte Jr. said the operation was launched after they received information that an undetermined number of smuggled cigarettes will be transported and distributed in Magay and Sta. Cruz Public Markets in Zamboanga City.

The operation was carried out by the BOC with the elements of the Philippine Coast Guard, Task Force Aduana, Naval Intelligence and Security Group Western Mindanao and Naval Special Operations Unit.

“A Warrant of Seizure and Detention (WSD) will be issued against the smuggled cigarettes for violation of Executive Order No. 245, the Amended Rules and Regulations Governing the Exportation and Importation of Leaf Tobacco and Tobacco Products, and Section 117 of Republic Act No. 10863, otherwise known as Customs Modernization and Tariff Act (CMTA),” the BOC said.

“A WSD will also be issued against the vessel, MJ Champion, for transporting the smuggled cigarettes which is a violation of Section 1113 of the CMTA,” it added.

Last September 18, around 30 cartons of assorted cigarettes estimated to be worth P900,000 were also seized at the Port of Zamboanga. The cartons were loaded into two hatch back type vehicles inside the pier area.

P17-M worth of fake cigarette shipment seized in Port of Manila – BOC

Robie de Guzman   •   June 3, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – The Bureau of Customs-Port of Manila (BOC-POM) on Wednesday said it has seized a shipment containing fake Mighty and Marvels cigarettes estimated to be worth P17.38 million.

In a statement, the BOC said the shipment consigned to Mvestisery Industrial Supply arrived from China on May 22, 2020.

It was placed on hold and was issued a pre-lodgement control order last May 27 after the POM received derogatory information from the BOC-Enforcement Group, the bureau added.

Upon physical examination, the assigned Customs Examiner assessed its total duties and taxes amounting to Php 9.96 million.

District Collector Arsenia Ilagan ordered the issuance of Warrants of Seizure and Detention against the entire shipment for violation of Section 1401 “Unlawful Importation or Exportation” in relation to Section 1113 “Property Subject Seizure and Forfeiture” of the Customs Modernization and Tariff Act.

“The Bureau of Customs maintains its steadfast commitment to curb unlawful trade and anti-smuggling in the nation’s border and inside customs territory,” the bureau said.

PH sends back over 2,600 tons of wastes to South Korea

Robie de Guzman   •   April 23, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – The Bureau of Customs (BOC) has shipped back to South Korea some 2,676 metric tons (MT) of waste materials that were stored at the PHIVIDEC Industrial Authority premises in Misamis Oriental since 2018.

In a report to Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III, Customs Commissioner Rey Leonardo Guerrero said the shipment was part of the 5,176.91 MT that the South Korean government committed to help send back to their country after these were illegally exported to the Philippines in July 2018.

The waste materials consist of plastic synthetic flakes that were illegally imported by the Cebu-based Verde Soko Philippines Industrial Corp.

Guerrero said the garbage was shipped back in 151 forty-footer containers.

The first batch of 51 containers was re-exported to Korea on Jan. 25, 2019, followed by another shipment of 50 containers on Jan. 15 this year.

A third batch consisting of 50 containers was shipped to Korea last March 21.

“The re-exportation took some time because the wastes have been exposed to natural elements of heat and rain, which made it difficult to re-bag and stuff inside the containers,” Guerrero said in his report.

The remaining 2,500 MT of wastes were initially scheduled to be shipped back in March but it was delayed due to the Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ), according to Guerrero.

The community quarantine has forced most people to stay in their homes as the operation of public transportation and classes in schools were suspended. Most government offices have implemented a skeleton force while other employees were ordered to work from their homes.

“Rest assured that the Bureau will undertake all the necessary means, within the bounds of the law, in order to expedite the re-exportation of these wastes,” Guerrero said.

BOC donates seized fish, rice shipments to OCD

Robie de Guzman   •   April 9, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – The Bureau of Customs (BOC) has donated to the Office of Civil Defense (OCD) containers of food items that were seized at the Manila International Container Port (MCIP).

In a statement, the BOC said the move is in compliance with the directive of Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III to donate goods in its custody as an aid to poor families affected by the Luzon-wide enhanced community quarantine against novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

The donated food items include 320 containers of rice and 186 containers of frozen bonito, mackerel, moonfish, squid, and round scad which were abandoned/forfeited, and were deemed properties of the government pursuant to the Customs Modernization and Tariff Act.

The BOC said it signed the deed of donation on April 7, Tuesday.

“To ensure that donations are fit for human consumption, the goods shall undergo examination and certification with the Bureau of Plant Industry and the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources prior to its distribution,” it said.

The donation is also pursuant to the provisions of the Joint Administrative Order No. 20-01 that abandoned/forfeited cargoes shall be given to the OCD for distribution.

Section 1141 (Mode of Disposition) of the CMTA also states that goods in BOC’s custody that are up for disposal “may be donated to another government agency or declared for official use of the Bureau, after approval of the Secretary of Finance, or sold at a public auction at the Port where the goods are located and published electronically or in a newspaper of general circulation.”

Last week, the BOC-Port of Davao also donated various personal protective equipment and medical emergency supplies to Southern Philippines Medical Center (SPMC) and to different medical facilities in Mindanao.

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