BORDER PROTECTION. The Bureau of Customs-Port of Clark arrests a claimant of over PHP2.1-million worth of Ketamine following a joint operation with the Customs Anti-Illegal Drugs Task Force and the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency on May 18, 2023. The BOC on Wednesday (May 24) vowed to intensify efforts to ensure protection in the country's borders. (Photo courtesy of the Bureau of Customs)

MANILA – The Bureau of Customs (BOC) on Wednesday said a 23-year-old man was arrested for claiming over PHP2.1 million worth of ketamine in a drug bust operation in Pasig City.

In a statement, BOC Commissioner Bienvenido Rubio said this was part of their intensified efforts to improve border protection.

“This is another successful drug bust that shows our consistent effort in preventing smuggling in all forms. Rest assured that the Bureau of Customs is further strengthening its enforcement and intelligence capabilities to protect our borders,” he said.

The BOC-Port of Clark was able to nab the suspect following a jointly controlled delivery operation in Pasig City last May 18.

"The Bureau of Customs-Port of Clark, together with the Customs Anti-Illegal Drugs Task Force (CAIDTF) and the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA), arrested the claimant of Ketamine worth P2,120,000," the BOC said.

However, another claimant was still at large.

The said shipment was initially declared as chocolates but was tagged as suspicious following an X-ray inspection and was then subjected to PDEA K9 sniffing.

"The shipment, said to contain 'chocolates,' was immediately subjected to a physical examination that led to the discovery of one glass container full of white crystalline substances concealed inside a glass of Imperial Rose Scented Candle," the BOC added.

The suspect will face charges for the alleged violation of the Customs Modernization and Tariff Act, in relation to the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002. (PNA)