Customs files smuggling raps vs Davao-based trader

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Thursday, December 5, 2013

TWO separate complaints were filed by the Bureau of Customs (BOC) against a Davao-based trader for illegal importations of used clothing and vehicles amounting to over P25 Million.

Named respondent was Soraida Limpao, owner and proprietor of We Pick Me Marketing, with address listed at Mamay Road, Damosa Complex, Barangay Angliongto, Davao City for attempting to smuggle 27 units of used Honda Fit and Toyota BB vehicles with an estimated value of P18 million; and one 40-foot container van filled with used clothing worth an estimated P7.5 Million through the Subport of Dadiangas.

The cases have been filed for violation of Section 3601 of the Tariff and Customs Code of the Philippines as well as Republic Act 4653 and Executive Order 156, which prohibit the importations of used clothing for health and public safety reason and used vehicles, respectively.

BOC records show that the shipment of used clothing arrived from Malaysia last October 23, 2013, which was misdeclared as blankets and beddings.

On the other hand, the used vehicles loaded in three container vans, came from Japan last October 26, 2013, were misdeclared as truck parts, and were shipped completely knocked-down (CKD).

Outgoing Customs Commissioner Ruffy Biazon said the shipments were seized after Customs personnel inspected the container vans by virtue of Alert Orders issued against the shipments.

"Even as we are in transition of leadership and change of personnel at the Bureau of Customs, we must ensure the continuity of services and the fulfillment of our mandate to ensure a level playing field for our local industries. We cannot let-up on our fight against smugglers," he said in a statement.

For her part, Deputy Commissioner Maria Edita Tan, head of the Revenue Collection and Monitoring Group, noted that they are beefing-up the Run After The Smugglers (RATS) program to ensure more effective investigation, case profiling and build-up as well as litigation.

"We are also improving our synergy and interoperability of units within the Bureau so we have a better handle on information and evidence that will help strengthens our drive against smugglers," she added.

A total of 112 smuggling cases have been filed during the term of outgoing Customs Commissioner Ruffy Biazon while there are 157 smuggling cases were filed under the RATS program since the term of President Benigno Aquino began. (FP/Sunnex)

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