Home » Customs & Trade, Ports/Terminals » BOC seizes P4.5M in smuggled onions at Manila port

The Bureau of Customs (BOC) has seized three forty-foot equivalent units (FEUs) containing smuggled onions with an estimated worth of P4.5 million at the Port of Manila as a result of its intensified inspection of shipments.

Customs Commissioner Isidro Lapeña in a press briefing on June 11 said the shipments, declared to contain ceramic products such as mugs, saucers, and décor, arrived from China on May 22.

The shipments were consigned to Precious Prince Enterprises with office address at 15320-B St., Michael St., San Agustin Village, Moonwalk, Parañaque City, and were signed for by customs broker Reymund Ledesma Cigaraya of Batasan Hills, Quezon City.

The containers went through non-intrusive inspection by BOC’s X-ray Inspection Project (XIP) and threw up suspicious images that did not match those of the declared contents, Lapeña added.

Upon the recommendation of XIP chief Atty. Zsae Carrie de Guzman, an alert order was issued by Port of Manila district collector Atty. Erastus Sandino Austria to prevent the release of the shipments from customs custody.

“A warrant of seizure and detention will be issued against the P4.5 million worth of shipment for violating Section 14000 in relation to Sections 1113 and 1401 of the Customs Modernization and Tariff Act,” Lapeña said.

Appropriate charges will also be filed against the importer and customs broker, while their accreditation with BOC will be suspended or revoked immediately. The onions, meanwhile, will be destroyed.

Lapeña said BOC will continue its intensified inspection of shipments “as long as it takes” in order to compel importers and customs stakeholders to pay the right duties and taxes and “level the playing field for the legitimate businesses.”

Since January 2018 to date, BOC said it has seized smuggled goods worth an estimated P83.98 million at the Port of Manila.

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