BOC-Zambo to run after vessel owners involved in smuggling

ZAMBOANGA CITY -- The Bureau of Customs (BOC) vowed to run after owners of vessels involved in smuggling activities in this southern port city.

Segundo Sigmundfreud Barte Jr., BOC district collector, on Wednesday issued the warning as he advised vessel owners to refrain from chartering and carrying smuggled items.

Backed by law enforcement agencies, BOC intercepted last week a shipment of some PHP60 million worth of smuggled cigarettes aboard a “jungkung” type of vessel in a west coast barangay of this city.

Another shipment of smuggled cigarettes concealed in five plastic drums was also seized at the local port aboard a wooden-hulled vessel that came from Jolo, Sulu.

Barte said that under the law, owners are also liable for smuggling if their vessels are caught ferrying smuggled items.

Vessels caught loading contraband will be impounded and cases will be filed against the operators, the BOC official warned.

The local BOC office has strengthened its anti-smuggling campaign here in a bid to increase collection. (PNA)

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