P1.35M smuggled cigarettes seized

ZAMBOANGA CITY — Authorities raided an old house serving as a storage site of smugglers here which resulted to the seizure of 30 master cases of assorted smuggled cigarettes with an estimated market worth of P1.35 million.

Bureau of Customs Zamboanga City district collector Segundo Barte Jr. disclosed that combined Customs and police authorities raided the house Barangay Caragasan in the west district of the city.

He added that elements of the Customs Intelligence and Investigation Service and Enforcement and Security Service Quick Reaction Team — together with policemen led by P/Ma.j Julius Dao-An and operatives of the Philippine Center on Transnational Crime — conducted a joint operation an anti-smuggling operation at the coastal areas of Barangays Caragasan and Maasin.

The operatives were able to seize 15 master cases of Gift cigarettes, 13 master cases of Champion cigarettes and two master cases of New Orleans.

According to reports, the smuggled cigarettes were left in the old house in preparation for delivery to two government main public markets here.

The BoC stressed that its campaign on border control will continue in coordination with police and military operatives in the Zamboanga Peninsula (Region 9) and in Basilan, Sulu and Tawi-Tawi provinces without let-up.

“We will continue our drive on border control as constantly reminded to us by our Customs Commissioner Yogi Filemon Ruiz,” Barte said.

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