P200-M smuggled cigarettes from Malaysia, Indonesia destroyed
Zamboanga City, September 14 (PIA) – The Bureau of Customs (BOC)-9 confirmed that around five thousand (5,000) smuggled cigarette boxes were seized in four months’ anti-smuggling operation amidst the COVID-19 crisis, BOC District Collector, Mr. Segundo Sigmundfreud Z. Barte, Jr.
“This is the result, during the COVID-19 pandemic. We confiscated approximately 5,000 smuggled cigarette boxes with total value of 194 to 200 million pesos,” Barte said.
The BOC intensified the anti-smuggling campaign as they discovered that smugglers took advantage the COVID-19 situation to illegally allow the entry of trafficked products to the city, a violation of the Anti-Smuggling Act of 2010 in the Philippines.
The smuggled cigarettes were believed “to come from Indonesia and Malaysia”, Barte added.
The District Collector has also noticed that most of the smuggled products pass through Jolo, Sulu, to the islands there before entering the seaport which served as their mainstream to get in the city unlawfully.
Meanwhile, the BOC commits to sustain the drive against smuggling in the region as well as the cooperation imposed by the line agencies. “We are more inspired to move and work because all the government agencies and local government units are collaborating together to help stop smuggling in the region,” stressed Barte.
Aside from the smuggled cigarettes, imported cigarette making materials were also confiscated along with fake stamps and receipts and turned-over to the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) who has direct jurisdiction for the disposition of fake receipts. Altogether, the over-all total worth of confiscation is estimated 1.5 Billion.
The condemnation of the smuggled cigarettes ensued on September 10 at Fast Cargo Logistics Warehouse in Baliwasan Zamboanga City and expected to be buried at the Zamboanga City Sanitary Landfill located at Salaan, Zamboanga City. (EDT/JRA/PIA9-Zamboanga City)