THE Bureau of Customs (BOC) under Commissioner Bienvenido Rubio continues to complement its hardline stance against smuggling by continuously charging suspected smugglers before the Department of Justice.
In a statement released last April 12, 2023, Commissioner Bienvenido Rubio said 65 criminal complaints for smuggling have been filed before the DOJ covering the first 3 months of 2023.
The filing of the cases and their chances of being elevated to the court for trial have been boosted by the meeting between Rubio and Justice Secretary Jesus Crispin Remulla last March 8, 2023, where they discussed how to further strengthen their cooperation in the prosecution of smuggling cases.
Rubio, during a talk with Pinoy Exposé, said among the proposals he discussed with the justice secretary is the holding of a ‘BOC-DOJ Legal Summit’ to pinpoint “bottlenecks” and immediately address issues that hamper the speedier prosecution of cases (Pinoy Exposé, March 20, 2023).
He noted that since 2016, some 400 smuggling cases have been filed by the BOC before the DOJ but resolving them have proven tedious.
Illegal drugs claimant nabbed in Manila
Meanwhile, another successful controlled delivery operation by the BOC and the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) apprehended last April 13, 2023 in Sta. Cruz, Manila, the recipient of illegal drugs that landed at the Port of Clark.
Port of Clark district collector John Simon, in a report to Rubio, said the shipment, weighing 2.378 kilos of high-grade (“kush) marijuana valued at P3.923 million, was shipped from California, USA, a day earlier declared as ‘Tevana Green Herbal Tea’ hidden in 5 tin cans.
After tests confirmed the shipment was actually illegal drugs, a composite team was immediately formed for the delivery and subsequent arrest of the recipient whose addressed was traced to a place in Sta. Cruz, Manila.
The 27-years old male recipient whose identity was not revealed was immediately apprehended after taking custody of the drug shipment, Simon said.