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Smuggled cigarettes seized in Basilan

Authorities found 30 master cases of Nelson brands of imported cigarettes, Cannon 23 mater cases: New Berlin 12: Bros green eight and Bros red seven.

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ZAMBOANGA CITY — The Bureau of Customs (BoC) and operatives from the Naval Forces in Western Mindanao (NFWM) intercepted a watercraft bound here loaded with about 80 master cases of smuggled cigarettes with an estimated market value of P3.6 million.

BoC Zamboanga City district collector Segundo Barte Jr. disclosed that combined state security forces were conducting a maritime patrol in the vicinity when they intercepted the vessel identified as (M/B) Sea Master loaded with the contraband at the vicinity two Nautical Mile off Malamawi Island in Basilan Province on Thursday morning.

He noted that after authorities boarded the vessel, they discovered that it was carrying 80 master cases of assorted brands of smuggled cigarettes worth about P3.6 million and was bound for an islet off Zamboanga City.

State forces asked for documentation, but the crew failed to present any papers which led to the seizure of the cargoes and the arrest of the two individuals identified as Kimar Sapinding and Uddin Misah.

Authorities towed the watercraft to Majini pier of the NFWM in this city and upon their arrival, members of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency immediately deployed their K9 to detect the presence of prohibited substances.

During the inventory of its cargo, authorities found 30 master cases of Nelson brands of imported cigarettes, Cannon 23 mater cases: New Berlin 12: Bros green eight and Bros red seven.

In a related development, Pagadian policemen intercepted and seized 44 master cases of assorted brands of smuggled cigarettes worth P1.98 million at Fish Port, Barangay San Pedro, Pagadian City in Zamboanga del Sur recently.

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