Another set of smugglers learned the hard way that “smuggling no longer pays” following the seizure today by the Bureau of Customs of some P30 million worth of undervalued and prohibited articles at the Manila International Container Port.
Impounded by Deputy Commissioner for Enforcement Horacio P. Suansing, Jr. on order of Customs Commissioner Angelito Alvarez were two shipments declared as wines but were found to contain brandies and other liquor variants and two other container vans stuffed with used clothing from the United States.
The assorted bottled spirits, said Suansing, had a retail value of at least P20 million. The Ukay-Ukay shipments were worth at least P10 million.
In his report to Alvarez, Suansing said that Siropia Incorporated with address at 7B YL Holdings Building, Salcedo Village cor. Rufino Streets, Legaspi Village, Makati declared the two shipments under Import Entry Nos. C-194575 and C-194574 as wines. A full examination conducted by agents of the Enforcement Group, however, revealed that the shipments contain no more than 1,224 bottles of Duque Sevilla Wine. The rest of the bottles numbering more than 24,000 were actually brandies and whiskies, namely Castellon Brandy and Label 5 Scotch Whiskey, respectively.
Suansing pointed out that brandies and whiskies “command a higher value and are therefore subject to higher excise taxes than ordinary table wines.”
Suansing also disclosed that the two container vans of used clothing were discovered following an Alert Order he issued on the strength of derogatory information received by his office that the shipment’s consignees, ACAB Enterprises of No. 65 Rizal Street, Poblacion, Muntinlupa City and ASAB Commercial located at B26 L11 Manfil Kapayapan Village, Canlubang, Calamba City misdeclared their shipments as either fabric or bags and school supplies, respectively.
Importation of used clothing is banned under Republic Act 4653.
In view of their latest accomplishments, Alvarez commended Suansing and his group for their continued vigilance and dedication to duty. He also ordered concerned offices of the BOC to conduct an investigation and file appropriate charges against the persons behind the smuggling attempt.