COTABATO CITY – Some 17 boxes of undocumented cigarettes worth PHP250,000 were seized by Marine and police troopers manning a checkpoint in Picong, Lanao del Sur, the military here said Wednesday.
Maj. Gen. Juvymax Uy, commander of the Army’s 6th Infantry Division and concurrent chief of the Joint Task Force Central (JTFC), said the smuggled items were intercepted by combined members of the 5th Marine Company, Marine Battalion Landing Team 5, and the Picong police at a JTFC quarantine control checkpoint in Barangay Miculado.
Uy said the troopers were manning the checkpoint on Tuesday afternoon when a red Toyota Innova vehicle with plate number KGN-399 passed by for an inspection.
When checked, the vehicle showed smuggled cigarettes concealed in boxes underneath other goods.
Withheld for questioning were vehicle driver Mantar Jamalodin Ali, 22, and his helper Manalocon Abdul Halim Ondi, 36, both of Dipolog City, Zamboanga del Norte.
“The two disclosed that the illegal imports came from Dipolog City to be transported towards Marawi City,” Uy said.
He said the two, the contraband, and the vehicle were under the custody of the Picong police for proper disposition and filing of appropriate charges. (PNA)