THE Bureau of Customs (BOC) has filed criminal charges against four trading firms and their brokers for their alleged involvement in the smuggling of onions and garlic from China amounting to more than P22 million.

Charged for violation of Republic Act No. 10863, otherwise known as the Customs Modernization and Tariff Act (CMTA), Republic Act No. 10845, otherwise known as the Anti-Agricultural Smuggling Act of 2016, and other pertinent laws, rules, and regulations were Flevo Trading, GBJ Consumer Goods Trading and JDFallar Consumer Goods Trading.

The customs brokers who processed the importation of the subject smuggled agricultural products are also facing administrative complaints before the Professional Regulation Commission (PRC).

The BOC- Bureau’s Action Team Against Smugglers (BOC-BATAS) led the filing of the criminal complaints before the Department of Justice.

Flevo Trading was charged for the alleged unlawful importation and misdeclaration of four shipments, declared as “Fresh Yellow Onions and Garlic” but were found to have misdeclared weight that was beyond the total allowable importation in their import permits.

The illegal act was uncovered last July 14 and July 16, 2021 during the inspection of the shipments at the Manila International Container Port.

On the other hand, GBJ Consumer Goods Trading was found to have misdeclared its shipment as “pastries ingredients” but was found to contain onions with a total value of P1,721,224.03.

The illegal shipment was discovered at the Port of Davao last July 19, 2021.

JDFallar Consumer Goods Trading was charged for the unlawful importation and misdeclaration of three shipments of supposed “cream cheese” but were found to contain onions amounting to P5,178,281.58 on August 10 2021, at the Port of Cagayan de Oro.

Meanwhile, PDCC Consumer Goods Trading was charged for the unlawful importation and misdeclaration of its shipment said to contain “frozen puff pastry” but was found to contain onions during inspection last August 10, 2021 at the Port of Cagayan de Oro.–





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