A new team has been created by the Bureau of Customs (BOC) in a bid to suppress smuggling activities in all seaports and airports in Iloilo.
The composite team dubbed Customs Border Protection was established by the Port of Iloilo to prevent all forms of smuggling and other customs fraud, Customs Commissioner Rey Leonardo B. Guerrero said.
It is composed of 18 personnel from various divisions of the port, namely the Enforcement and Security Service, Customs Intelligence and Investigation Service, Port Operations Division, and Assessment Division.
The team covers the Collection District VI, Port of Iloilo, and Sub-Port of Pulupandan including the provinces of Aklan, Antique, Capiz, Iloilo, Guimaras and Negros Occidental; highly urbanized cities of Iloilo and Bacolod as well as its coastal areas, seaports, airports, wharves, bays, and other areas that may be classified as Customs jurisdiction.
According to the bureau, the anti-smuggling composite team “shall exercise police authority as provided under the Customs Modernization and Tariff Act (CMTA) as implemented by Customs Administrative Order No. 03-2019 and other applicable Customs rules and regulations.”
District Collector Ciriaco Ugay said an orientation briefing was conducted last January 29 to discuss relevant actions prior to conduct of operations, during, and post operations.
The operation plan of the port, Ugay added, is being coordinated with the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) VI. The two agencies will also conduct simulation exercises on seaport and airport drug interdiction on February 24.