Coast Guard seizes contraband ammo in Palawan-A A +A
Wednesday, December 11, 2013
THE Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) confiscated Tuesday eight boxes containing 4,000 rounds of ammunition on board a passenger vessel in Coron, Palawan.
Commander Armando Balilo, PCG Public Affairs chief, said Coast Guard personnel spotted the boxes containing various types of ammunition while conducting pre-departure inspection inside M/V Asuncion XI.
Coast guard personnel in the area received an urgent call from John Julius Antenor, collection representative from the Philippine Ports Authority, after a stevedore of Prudential Customs Brokerage Services discovered suspicious boxes declared as "relief items" for the victims of super typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan) that devastated the province last month.
Joint inspection team led by Lieutenant Junior Grade Mark Theodore Valencia together with members of the PCG K-9 unit and Coast Guard Special Operations Group (CGSOG) boarded the passenger vessel and later found out the boxes declared having humanitarian aid inside from Manila was actually containing undocumented shipments of various ammunition such as caliber .38, caliber .40, caliber. 45, and 9-mm types.
"They were actually declared as relief goods pero nung buksan na during the on board inspection, it appears na puro bala pala ang laman ng mga kontrabando na ito," Balilo said.
Based on the bill of lading, the cargo is consigned to a certain Judson Pe, a resident Barangay Tumpay in Coron.
Balilo noted that the Coast Guard has already started to intensify its security for the holiday season and reminded shipping passengers and owners against transporting illegal or undocumented firearms and firecrackers on board passenger and cargo vessels.
He added that passenger assistance centers has already been set-up in all ports nationwide and all Coast Guard units should practice extra vigilance in ports with random checks on passengers and luggage. (Sunnex)