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BoC gets list of big-time smugglers

A consumer group on Tuesday has submitted to the Bureau of Customs (BoC) a list of suspected big time smugglers and urged Commissioner Nicanor Faeldon to immediately address the issue of corruption plaguing the agency.

The United Filipino Consumers and Commuters (UFCC) as well as Volunteers Against Crime and Corruption (VACC) submitted documents to the BoC, naming around 30 individuals linked to the smuggling of cement and other imported products.

The groups asked the commissioner to investigate former and current employees as well as businessmen and other personalities allegedly involved in smuggling which causes the government to lose P200 billion in revenues every year.

However, UFCC spokesperson Rodolfo Javellana Jr. declined to identify the people in the list as it would jeopardize the campaign against smugglers who may leave the country to avoid prosecution.

He said Faeldon should be the one to divulge the identities of the alleged smugglers.

In an interview over ANC, Faeldon admitted that the agency does not have enough facilities and equipment to implement better anti-smuggling measures. However he remains confident that corruption in the bureau can be eradicated.

He said corruption in the agency has persisted because its past leaders had become part of the culture inside the BoC.

“I think the weakness of the past leaders of the bureau is they are also part of the culture. You have to set the standards of your goal in trying to fix the bureau or trying to eradicate corruption,” he said.
(Argyll Cyrus B. Geducos)