EIGHT shipments from China, Hong Kong, and India yielded P104,081,500 million worth of imported onions, sugar, and cigarettes during a series of inspections this February 2023 by a team from the Bureau of Customs’ (BOC) Customs Intelligence and Investigation Service-Manila International Container Port (CIIS-MICP).
The shipments—five of which came from China, two from Hong Kong, and one from India—contained misdeclared and undeclared red and white onions, sugar, and cigarettes.
These shipments arrived between December 29, 2022 and February 10, 2023, and were examined between February 17 and 23, 2023 after the issuance of Alert Orders (AOs), Intelligence Officer 3 Alvin Enciso said, based on the derogatory information received by the CIIS-MICP, which he leads.
Deputy Commissioner for Intelligence Group Juvymax Uy lauded the recent spate of successful operations that had led to the seizure of millions worth of agricultural products.
“Our Commissioner Bienvenido Rubio has had his hands full with the transition, but that didn’t stop him from leading the agency in our fight against smuggling,” he said.
In addition, Uy gave credit to the CIIS-MICP for gathering the much-needed information to track down the illegal shipments.
“Our intel officers and agents are highly skilled and equipped at detecting the concealment methods for these smuggling activities,” he noted.
The three consignees of the shipments would be asked to present the proper permits for the importation of the goods.
Without such documents, the BOC is to conduct the corresponding seizure and forfeiture proceedings against the subject shipments for violation of Sec. 1400 (misdeclaration in goods declaration) in relation to Sec. 1113 (property subject to seizure and forfeiture) of Republic Act No. 10863 known as the Customs Modernization and Tariff Act (CMTA) and Republic Act 10845 or the Anti-Agricultural Smuggling Act of 2016.
The case records will also be forwarded to the Bureau’s Action Team Against Smugglers (BATAS) for the filing of appropriate charges and criminal cases against those responsible for the illegal importation of the said agricultural products.