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23 June 2024, 23:40 PM

BOC-POZ, PN, and PCG Seize 160.3 Million Worth of Undocumented Cigarettes

August 31, 2023

An intelligence report from the Bureau of Customs Intelligence Group (BOC-IG) and Customs Intelligence and Investigation Service (CIIS) in the Port of Zamboanga led the Philippine Navy (PN) and elements of PC390 to intercept a motorboat loaded with P160.3 million worth of undocumented cigarettes on August 23, 2023.

The motorboat, marked “MB INDAH NADZ,” carrying 2,798 master cases of “Oakley Original” brand cigarettes, was apprehended in the waters of Baturapac Island, Tandubas, Tawi-Tawi.

Twelve (12) crew members aboard the motorboat failed to present proper documents to prove the regularity of the prior importation of the alleged smuggled cigarettes.

Apprehending officers of the PN, together with elements from the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) and personnel from the BOC Sub-Port of Bongao, escorted and temporarily moored the motorboat in the 21st Special Forces Company Riverine in Dacon Compound, Recodo, Zamboanga City.

After conducting an inventory, the subject cigarettes were stored at the ZC Paperline & Computer Stationers Warehouse in Barangay Tetuan, Zamboanga City, for safekeeping pending seizure and forfeiture proceedings.

The master cases of cigarettes were seized for violation of Section 117 in relation to Section 1113 of the Republic Act (RA) No. 10863, or the “Customs Modernization and Tariff Act (CMTA) of 2016, and Executive Order No. 245 entitled “Amended Rules and Regulations Governing the Exportation and Importation of Leaf Tobacco and Tobacco Products”.

A warrant of seizure and detention will be issued against the seized master cases of cigarettes by the Port of Zamboanga Acting District Collector, Engr. Arthur G. Sevilla, Jr.

As directed by BOC Commissioner Bienvenido Y. Rubio to curb smuggling in all forms, BOC-POZ intensified its anti-smuggling operations and closely coordinated with local and national law enforcement agencies.

“The BOC is unwavering in its commitment in combating smuggling and other illicit activities in order to deter others from committing these kinds of devious crimes which similarly tantamount to economic sabotage,” said Commissioner Rubio.

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