Fifty million pesos worth of misdeclared cigarettes from China were destroyed by the Bureau of Customs (BOC)-Port of Cagayan de Oro inside a warehouse facility in Opol, Misamis Oriental on Friday, October 2, 2020.
A Team led by District Collector John Simon, District Commander of Enforcement and Security Services (ESS) SP/Capt. Abdila Maulana Jr., District Chief of Customs Intelligence and Investigation Service (CIIS) Oliver Valliente and personnel from Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency in Northern Mindanao, condemned through crushing 79,800 reams of cigarettes.
Also condemned with the illicit cigarettes is the shipment consigned to Fern Freight Enterprises which arrived at Mindanao Container Terminal in Tagoloan, Misamis Oriental on May 14,2020 and declared to be office furnitures.
District Collector Simon issued a Decree of Abandonment for the shipment upon failure to lodge or request for extension of lodgement of its goods declaration within 15 days from the discharge of the last package from the carrying vessel as provided under Sec. 407 of the Customs Modernization and Tariff Act.
Director Maulana of ESS has previously issued alert order against the shipment. This was followed by a 100% physical examination which revealed the shipment actually containing cigarettes.
Meanwhile, a portion of the destroyed cigarettes is from the shipment consigned to Dong Yin Industrial Supplies which arrived on June 9, 2020 at Mindanao Container Terminal declared to be disposable cups.
A Warrant of Seizure and Detention was issued against the shipment consequently followed by an Order of Forfeiture upon being found out to contain cigarettes.
The Port of Cagayan de Oro, through District Collector John Simon, has vowed to continue going after consignees who attempt to evade customs duties through smuggling. Subsequently, Accounts Management Office (AMO) revoked the accreditation of both consignees for violation of Customs rules and regulations.
Previously, the Port of Cagayan de Oro has also destroyed 18,000 reams of smuggled cigarettes on September 9, 2020.
Kiara Lauren Ibanez / BENJAMIN CUARESMA