By Hannah Torregoza
The Senate blue ribbon committee has cited an intelligence officer of the Bureau of Customs (BOC) for contempt and ordered him detained at the Senate for lying during the panel’s investigation into the P6.8-billion worth of shabu that were hidden inside magnetic lifters.
Senator Richard Gordon cited Jimmy Guban, Customs Intelligence and Investigation Service (CIIS), for contempt and also recommended his removal from the BOC.
This was after Gordon was able to ascertain that Guban was the one who tapped Joel Maritana—a second year high school drop out and scavenger—from Bacoor, Cavite to act as a “fall guy” to shield Marina dela Cruz Signapan, owner of the SMYD Trading whom the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) suspected of involvement in the illegal drug shipment.
The PDEA has earlier insisted that the four magnetic lifters that were intercepted in Cavite that contained the P6.8-billion worth of shabu after PDEA’s K-9 dog responded twice to every magnetic lifter when they inspected the warehouse.
These magnetic lifters were similar to the two other lifters that were found to contain more than 355 kilos of shabu at the Manila International Container Terminal (MICT).
During the hearing, Gordon noted the inconsistencies in Guban’s testimonies and was able to elicit evidence that he orchestrated questionable transactions to facilitate the entry of the illegal drug shipment.
Besides detention, Gordon tasked Customs Chief Isidro Lapeña and PDEA Director General Aaron Aquino to expedite their investigation into Guban to facilitate his removal from service and the filing of criminal cases against him.