BoC files smuggling charges Vs. Sta. Rosa farmsPosted on
DAVAO CITY (July 31) – The Bureau of Customs, through the Bureau Action Team Against Smugglers (BATAS) has filed smuggling charges against the owner and officials of Santa Rosa Farms Products Corporation for the unlawful importation of 200 containers of rice from Thailand in June at the Manila International Container Port (MICP) without the required import permit.
Four smuggling charges before the Department of Justice against the president of Sta. Rosa Farms Jomerito “Jojo” Soliman, Chief Financial Officer Dolores Opancia, Director Mary Grace Cayanan, and Director Marileen S. Avañez.
Commissioner Isidro Lapeña said that under the Anti-Agricultural Smuggling Act, rice smuggling is considered as a non-bailable offense. “We will make sure that smugglers and hoarders of rice will bleed money and will not benefit from their illegal acts,” said Commissioner Isidro Lapeña. It is considered as the “largest haul of smuggled rice.”
Sta Rosa Farms was charged for violating Section 1401 of the Customs Modernization and Tariff Act (CMTA) and Republic Act No. 10845 or the Anti-Agricultural Smuggling Act. Licensed Customs Broker Diosdado M. Santiago, who processed the importation, was also charged.
“As instructed by the President, the government particularly the Bureau of Customs will not waiver in its drive against smuggling of rice in the country and the abuses being done by the rice cartels. The filing of these criminal cases before the Department of Justice shows the commitment of the current administration to ensure that these smugglers are brought to justice. ” Lapeña added. (ezc/ NewsLine)