In pursuit of transparency and border security, the Revenue Collection Monitoring Group (RCMG), through the Bureau’s Action Team Against Smugglers (BATAS) of the Legal Service, intensified its action against erring importers and customs brokers who violated customs laws, rules, and regulations.
The anti-smuggling efforts of the Bureau of Customs (BOC) in coordination with other government agencies resulted in the filing of a total of 103 criminal cases from January to December 2021 against 309 individuals composed of importers and customs brokers for violations of the Republic Act No. 10863, also known as the Customs Modernization and Tariff Act (CMTA) and other pertinent laws.
Similarly, 63 administrative cases were filed against licensed customs brokers before the Professional Regulation Commission (PRC).
Data from BATAS also show that among the cases involved the unlawful importation of cigarettes valued at Php 897.1 million; agricultural products valued at Php 293.9 million; general merchandise amounting to almost Php 253.2 million; medicines valued at Php 57.1 million; motor vehicles valued at Php 49.1 million; and other commodities valued at Php 63.1 million.
Further, criminal cases due to unlawful removal and disarming of electronic Customs seals were also filed against erring individuals.
The BOC remains committed in continuing the fight against smuggling by filing the appropriate cases against unscrupulous individuals.