As part of Bureau of Customs (BOC) commissioner Rey Leonardo Guerrero’s revitalized campaign against importation of fake and smuggled tobacco products, the Enforcement and Security Service Quick Reaction Team (ESS-QRT) coordinated with the Customs Intelligence and Investigation Service (CIIS) and raided a warehouse in Barangay Tugatog Malabon City last Wednesday.
Armed with a Letter of Authority (LOA) signed by Guerrero, the operating team, which was composed of members of ESS-QRT, CIIS and Barangay officials, raided the warehouse and found therein hundreds of cases and boxes of illicit cigarettes valued at P6.5 million.
Further investigation is being conducted to identify the owner of the products as well as the owner of the warehouse.
Inventory is also ongoing to ascertain the volume and amount of the seized goods.
The ESS explained that the people behind the warehouse and the illicit products are liable for the violation of Section 1400 of R.A. 10863 also known as the Customs Modernization and Tariff Act as well the provisions of R.A. 8424 also known as the National Internal Revenue Code of the Philippines for the lack and falsification of tax stamps.
As the Bureau of Customs continues to enhance efforts to strengthen border security, the ESS remains committed in ensuring that illicit goods are apprehended to prevent the proliferation of illegal and fake goods in the market.
The ESS also assures that those who are responsible shall be made to face the full force of the law.
Kiara Lauren Ibanez / BENJAMIN CUARESMA