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In Zamboanga, another cargo of contraband cigarettes was discovered.

On Friday, officials in Zamboanga del Norte seized a cargo of illicit cigarettes for PHP596,000, raising the total amount of contraband seized this week to PHP3.9 million.

The shipment was confiscated along the national highway in Barangay Poblacion, Sindangan town of the province, at about 3:50 a.m., according to Brig. Gen. Franco Simborio, Director of Police Regional Office 9 (Zamboanga Peninsula).

According to Simborio, they detained truck driver Basar Hassan, 46, and truckman Appay Sangkahan, 40, both of whom are inhabitants of the city’s barangays Talon-Talon and Mampang, respectively.

He claimed that Sindangan police officers were enforcing the election weapons ban at a roadblock when they came across Hassan’s Isuzu Elf truck.

Police officers observed the two actings suspiciously, prompting an inspection of the truck’s contents, which turned out to be smuggled cigarettes in plastic canisters.

The two, according to Simborio, failed to submit papers for their shipment, which included 54 master cases and 50 reams of different cigarettes valued at PHP596,000.

He added the two were taken into custody by the Sindangan municipal police station, along with the boxes of contraband cigarettes and the vehicle, for proper disposition.

The seizure on Friday was the third shipment of contraband cigarettes confiscated in the region this week.

The first was seized here on Sunday for PHP2.2 million, and the second was seized in Dumingag, Zamboanga del Sur on Tuesday for PHP1.2 million.

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