Marijuana A Customs agent examines the recovered ‘kush’ or high-grade dried marijuana at NAIA. Photo courtesy by CUSTOMS-NAIA

BOC seizes P16.8M balikbayan box with ‘kush’

February 11, 2023 Jun I. Legaspi 198 views

A BALIKBAYAN box declared as “personal effects” containing 12,000 grams of “kush” (high-grade marijuana) worth P16.8 million was intercepted by Bureau of Customs (BOC) based in Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) at Pair Cargo Warehouse in Pasay City, District Collector Carmelita H. Talusan reported.

Talusan said the composite team composed of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA), NAIA Inter-Agency Drug Interdiction Task Group (NAIA-IADITG) also arrested the consignee during controlled delivery operations Saturday, February 11, 2023, in Antipolo, Rizal.

Based on a report, the balikbayan box arrived in Port of NAIA from California, USA.

However, upon X-ray screening and physical Customs examination, the parcel was discovered to contain 12,000 grams of “dried leaves.”

PDEA laboratory testing revealed that the substance was high-grade marijuana, a “dangerous drug” as per RA (Republic Act) 9165, also known as the Anti-illegal Drugs Act.

The arrested claimant is currently undergoing custodial investigation by PDEA for initiating corresponding inquest proceedings for the violation of RA 9165 and RA 10863, also known as the Customs Modernization Act (CMTA).

BOC-NAIA, under the new leadership of Commissioner Bienvenido Y. Rubio, said they remain committed to protecting the country against the entry of illegal goods and smuggling in the borders as per the directives of President Ferdinand R. Marcos, Jr.

The Port, led by Talusan, stated that they will continue to be vigilant in border protection efforts, meeting revenue targets and balancing with trade facilitation.