NBI hunting coffee magnate

Manila court issues arrest warrant versus Lu Chong for alleged attempt to smuggle P1.87-billion worth of shabu

August 3, 2022

The National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) has launched a manhunt against Bernard Lu Chong, reportedly the local franchisee of Canadian coffee shop chain Tim Horton’s, over an alleged attempt to smuggle P1.87-billion worth of shabu at the Manila International Container Port (MICP).

“Mr. Lu Chong can spare everyone the trouble if he surrenders and faces the charges against him,” NBI international operations divisions chief Joey Moran said.

The case against Lu Chong stemmed from his alleged role as one of the owners of Fortuneyield Cargo Services Corporation, the assigned consignee of the 276.3 kilos of shabu intercepted at MICP on 31 May 2018.

Branch 13 of the Manila Regional Trial Court issued the arrest warrant against Lu Chong for alleged violation of Section 4, Article 2, for the non-bailable importation of illegal drugs offense under the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002.

Senior Deputy State Prosecutor Theodore Villanueva declared in a seven-page resolution there’s probable cause against Lu Chong “as Fortuneyield paid P20,000 as container deposit and P76,807.50 for [the] freight.”

“It would be impossible for these payments of significant amounts to be made without the general manager’s knowledge and acquiescence,” the resolution read.

Indicted with Lu Chong were Xu Zhi Juan, a Chinese national, Alvin Bautista, Fe Tamayosa, Jane Abello Castillo, Carlo Dale Sueta, Abraham Torrecampo, Arwin Jay Caparros, Leonard Sucaldito, Mark Leo Magpayo, Brian Pabilona and Francis Young.


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