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BOC raids allegedly uncover P120 million worth of illegal goods in Navotas.

The Bureau of Customs (BOC) reported Sunday that a series of inspections on seven warehouses or cold storage facilities turned up suspected smuggled frozen chicken and seafood goods worth an estimated PHP120 million.

The composite team visited the warehouses in Navotas City on Friday to put the Letters of Authority (LOAs) signed by Commissioner Bienvenido Rubio into effect, according to a statement from the BOC.

The LOAs were served to warehouse representatives under the direction of Customs Intelligence and Investigation Service-Manila International Container Port (CIIS-MICP) chief Alvin Enciso.

The group included representatives from the Business Permit and License Office (BPLO), the Department of Agriculture’s (DA) Assistant Secretary James Layug, the Navotas City Lone District Representative Toby Tiangco, and village officials.

The team searched the warehouses after the representatives acknowledged the LOA and discovered poultry products like frozen pork legs, chicken drumsticks, pork spareribs, squid rings, crayfish, pork hinges, baloney, Brawley beef, pork aorta, chicken feet, pork riblets, golden pampano, pangasius fillet, boneless pork ham, fish tofu, and pork ears.

Although China supplied the majority of the frozen seafood, there was also beef from Brazil and Australia, pig from the US, and Russian-produced pork ears.

Investigators also discovered a vacant warehouse that had been constructed specifically as a cold storage facility.

“Our bureau staff and law enforcement officers did an excellent job on this. I am aware of the time and commitment required to inspect every warehouse in a single day. Because these activities wouldn’t be possible without appropriate cooperation across government departments, it also serves to highlight the significance of such coordination, according to Rubio.

The gang secured the warehouses with padlocks and seals, handing the village officials present during the inspection the keys to the empty storage facility.

The allocated Customs examiner will conduct the inventory of the commodities, and agents from the CIIS and Enforcement and Security Service will be present to observe.

Owners of the products would be required to provide importation documentation or payment proofs.

If there is no required documentation, Republic Act No. 10863, also known as the Customs Modernization and Tariff Act, would be violated, and Section 1400 (misdeclaration in goods declared) in relation to Section 1113 (property susceptible to seizure and forfeiture), will be violated.

The impact of illicit goods on the Philippine market was prevented by border control, according to Juvymax Uy, Deputy Commissioner for the Intelligence Group.

“Our officers have once again demonstrated their vigilance in identifying, identifying, and intercepting any threats to the economic operations of our people. By preventing consumers from purchasing these products and so preserving the lives of individuals who follow the correct legal procedures for bringing in imported goods, the bureau safeguards the public in a number of ways, the official continued.

The National Meat Inspection Service, Philippine Coast Guard, DA-Inspectorate, and Enforcement Office all worked together to coordinate the operation.

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