MANILA – The Bureau of Customs-Port of Zamboanga (BOC-POZ) destroyed some PHP323 million worth of seized and forfeited smuggled cigarettes.
POZ Acting District Collect Arthur Sevilla Jr. led the destruction of 5,624 master cases and 1,171 reams of contraband cigarettes at a warehouse rented by the BOC in Barangay Tetuan, Zamboanga City on Thursday, the BOC said in a news release Friday.
The cigarettes were seized during separate maritime patrol operations and Customs checkpoints in the Zamboanga Peninsula and the provinces of Basilan, Sulu and Tawi-Tawi from May to November this year.
The cigarettes were drenched in water by personnel from the Bureau of Fire Protection, subsequently crushed by payloader equipment and then disposed of in the sanitary landfill in Barangay Salaan.
The seizure and destruction of these contrabands complies with Commissioner Bienvenido Rubio's order to relentlessly combat the illicit tobacco trade in the country and forge a close partnership with law enforcement agencies to further strengthen the bureau’s anti-smuggling campaign.
Rubio, meanwhile, commended the POZ for its vigilance in preventing the entry of illicit cigarettes into the country. (PNA)