ZAMBOANGA CITY, Philippines — The Bureau of Customs (BOC) on Tuesday (November 5) seized P4.2 million worth of smuggled cigarettes at Urban Poor Drive, Tugbungan, Zamboanga City.
The items consisting of 143 master cases and 40 reams of Bravo Red Cigarettes from Malaysia, were discovered aboard a panel truck with temporary plate No. 090104.
The smuggled cigarettes and the truck were immediately turned over to the BOC for inventory and proper disposition.
Meanwhile, the suspects involved were turned over to Zamboanga Police Office Station 06 for investigation and for filing of possible charges.
District Collector Segundo Sigmundfreud Barte Jr. said in a statement that the agency’s intensified anti-smuggling operations under the marching orders of BOC Commissioner Rey Guerrero mainly contributed to the apprehension.
Barte said seizure of fake and smuggled products will protect the public from possible health risks these items pose.
Joint operatives of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA), police and military seized P3.4 million worth of shabu and arrested two suspects in a buy-bust operation in Zamboanga City on Sunday (November 3).
Authorities identified the suspects as Alner Andao and Almigar Jimla of Barangay Ayala.
Seized from them were 10 sachets of suspected shabu weighing half a kilo; three cellphones; buy-bust money and the vehicle used in the transaction.
The PDEA said an informant alerted them of the suspects’ illegal activities which prompted the agency to immediately plan and execute said operation.
“Mayroon tayong confidential informant nagsumbong sa atin na mayroong pwedeng magbenta ng half kilo ng shabu. So dahil trabaho natin ito, eventually nag-assign tayo ng agent as undercover,” said PDEA agent, Jury Rocamora.
Andao and Jimla will be facing charges for violation of Republic Act 9165 or the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002. — CAL (With reports from Dante Amento)
Four suspected members of Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) were arrested during the joint operation of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and the Philippine National Police (PNP) in Zamboanga City on Thursday (September 26).
The arrested individuals were identified as Aljiver Habibula, Omar Julaspih, Rody Marail, and Nash Amik who are all from Sulu province and are currently residing at Barangay Baliwasan, Zamboanga City.
Recovered from the operation are ingredients for Improvised Explosive Device (IED).
According to the PNP, they have been monitoring the suspects for several days. They also clarified they have not received any threats of bombing in Zamboanga City.
“Batay sa briefing ng ating intelligence division ay wala naman talaga tayong threat tungkol diyan. Hindi rin natin masasabi kung ito ba ay may plano (attack) para sa ating fiesta pilar (Based on the briefing of our intelligence division, there are no threats. We also cannot say if they have a planned attack for our festival),” Police Regional Office 9 Spokesperson PMaj. Helen Galvez said.
However, according to AFP Western Mindanao Command Spokesperson Maj. Arvin John Encinas, they received a report last month about the ASG’s plan to bomb various areas in the country.
Encinas said this is a part of ASG’s retaliatory attack because their number continues to decrease.
“Maliit na lang iyan pero mayroon silang kakayahan to conduct IED attacks (They may be small but they still have the capacity to conduct IED attacks),” he warned.
Due to this, he reminded the public to immediately report to the authorities any suspicious individuals in their area.
They can contact the PRO-9 office at 0917 506 2000.—AAC (with reports from Dante Amento)
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