Tuesday, January 19, 2021
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BOC seizes dollars inserted in ‘Chinese cookbook recipes’

‘Chinese cookbook’ yields more than $50,000. Photo from the Bureau of Customs.

The Bureau of Customs (BOC) Port of Clark seized US$54,215 bills (P2.7 million) found inserted between pages of various magazines that came in a shipment from Hong Kong.

The shipment declared to contain “Chinese cookbook recipes” arrived on May 25, 2020 from Hong Kong and was subjected to non-intrusive examination, BOC said in a statement. Thereafter, the shipment was subjected to physical examination that led to the discovery of 540 pieces of $100 bills, two $50 bills, four $20 bills, one $10 bill, and five $5 bills found inserted between pages of seven different magazines.

A Warrant of Seizure and Detention was issued by BOC Port of Clark district collector Atty. Ruby Alameda for violation of Sections 1400 (Misdeclaration, Misclassification, Undervaluation, in Goods Declaration) and 1113 (Property Subject to Seizure and Forfeiture) f, i, and l (3) of Republic Act No. 10863, otherwise known as the Customs Modernization and Tariff Act, in relation to the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) Foreign Exchange Transaction Manual.

Section 1113 f states property subject to seizure and forfeiture include “goods, the importation or exportation of which are effected or attempted contrary to law, or any goods of prohibited importation or exportation, and all other goods which, in the opinion of the District Collector, have been used, are or were entered to be used as instruments in the importation or the exportation of the former”.

Also subject to seizure and forfeiture, under Section 1113 i, is “any package of imported goods which is found upon examination to contain goods not specified in the invoice or goods declaration including all other packages purportedly containing imported goods similar to those declared in the invoice or goods declaration to be the contents of the misdeclared package.”

The BSP Foreign Exchange Transaction Manual states that any person, who brings into or takes out of the Philippines foreign currency, as well as other foreign currency-denominated bearer monetary instruments, in excess of US$10,000 or its equivalent is required to declare the same in writing and to furnish information on the source and purpose of the transport of such currency or monetary instrument.

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