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20 June 2024, 07:33 AM

Customs Davao, Navy Seized 17M Contraband Cigarettes

December 19, 2023

In a joint operation on December 3, 2023, the Bureau of Customs (BOC) – Port of Davao and the Naval Forces Eastern Mindanao (NFEM) successfully intercepted illicit contraband in Sultan Kudarat, South Cotabato. This operation led to the apprehension of 454 master cases containing 22,700 reams of assorted brands of cigarettes, with a combined estimated value of P17,025,500.00. The motorized banca used to transport the smuggled cigarettes was likewise seized during the operation.

Acting on credible intelligence and in collaboration with the NFEM, BOC-Davao initiated an extensive operation to curtail the illegal trade of cigarettes within the region. The composite team moved into action to intercept and investigate a motorized banca suspected of carrying illicit goods. Upon interception of the said motorized banca, a substantial quantity of undocumented smuggled cigarettes was discovered, hence, a violation of the Customs Modernization and Tariff Act for Outright Smuggling.

Six (6) individuals operating the motorized banca were turned over to the Naval Intelligence Security Group (NISG) for booking and filing of appropriate charges. Following the conduct of inventory, the seized cigarettes and motorized banca are now stored in a warehouse pending legal proceedings for seizure and forfeiture.

The Bureau of Customs, Collection District XII, under the leadership of Maita S. Acevedo, Officer-in-Charge (OIC), with the guidance of Commissioner Bienvenido Rubio who consistently emphasized that: “the BOC is exerting every effort to prevent the entry of these illicit goods into the community.”, the agency remains committed in safeguarding the nation’s borders and economy from illegal trade activities.

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