BOC Zamboanga Intercepts Php15 Million Worth of Smuggled Rice

The Bureau of Customs- Port of Zamboanga, through its Enforcement and Security Service (ESS) and Customs Intelligence and Investigation Service (CIIS), in coordination with Philippine Coast Guard- Coast Guard District BARMM (PCG CGDBARMM), successfully intercepted Php 15 million estimated worth of smuggled rice off the waters of Bongao, Tawi-Tawi.

On 12 September 2021, intelligence information prompted the BOC, in coordination with CGDBARMM through Coast Guard Station Central Tawi-Tawi, to conduct a joint operation against a watercraft that is allegedly carrying undocumented sacks of rice. The anti-smuggling operation resulted in the successful interception of one (1) motor launch named MV ESHAN KHAN off Bongao, Tawi-Tawi. The said motor launch with 14 crew members on board, came from Sandakan, Malaysia, and was transporting undocumented 15,000 to 20,000 sacks of rice with a total estimated value of fifteen million pesos (Php 15,000,000.00) to mainland Zamboanga.

District Collector Segundo Sigmundfreud Z. Barte Jr has credited this achievement to the stewardship of Customs Commissioner Rey Leonardo B. Guerrero and his directive to intensify BOC’s anti-smuggling operations in ZAMBASULTA and maintain close coordination with partner law enforcement agencies.

The intercepted watercraft and the sacks of rice are now in the custody of the Subport of Bongao, Tawi-Tawi led by Subport Collector Felimon Pura Jr. It is now in the process of turnover to the BOC District Office for proper inventory and disposition for violation of R.A. 11203 otherwise known as the “Rice Tariffication Law” in relation to Section 117 of the “Customs Modernization and Tariff Act (CMTA) of 2016.