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Importers of toxic materials charged

The Bureau of Customs (BoC) has filed smuggling cases against several importers and brokers before the Department of Justice, officials said yesterday.

The cases were filed through the Bureau’s Action Team Against Smugglers (BATAS) on Tuesday.

BATAS charged the executives of Moving Forward Global Trading namely Liezl Romero Catingan, Maria Josiegen Arcilla, Jonaliza Pedarce Gabutan, Werren Trespeces, Denes Negro Camay, Amador Visitacion Villalon, with office address at 38 North Rd., Cortes Compound Basak in Mandaue City, Cebu; customs broker Romer Gastador; and other co-conspirators.

The bureau filed the cases due to the importation of hazardous materials into the country in January 2017. The shipment arrived at the Port of Cebu from Korea.

The shipment was declared to contain 2,500 metric tons of wood chips and 2,500 metric tons of recycled synthetic resins, but upon inspection the containers were found to be packed with plastic heterogeneous materials with an estimate value of R4.87 million.

The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) prohibits the importation of such hazardous materials.

According to BATAS officials, they violated the Customs Modernization and Tariff Act of 2016; DENR Administrative Order (AO) No. 1994-28, or the “Interim Guidelines in the Importation of Recyclable Materials Containing Hazardous Substances; and the Basel Convention on the Transboundary Movement of Hazardous Wastes and their Disposal.

In another case, BATAS filed smuggling charges against the owners and broker Silver Crown Centennial Marketing Company and other co-conspirators who were involved in the illegal shipment of truck components.

The shipment from Korea, which arrived in February 2015 at the Port of Davao, was declared as “used replacement parts for light trucks.”

However, X-ray inspection revealed that the shipment contained various truck components and used tires and engines without the required Certificate of Authority to Import from the Bureau of Import Services.

The importers and brokers were charged with violation of the Tariff and Customs Code of the Philippines, Department of Trade and Industry Administrative Order No. 8 series of 2003, or the Guidelines for the Mandatory Accreditation of Bus/Truck Rebuilding Centers, Letter of Instruction No. 1086 which prohibits the importation of used tires, and Article 172 of the revised Penal Code. (Betheena Kae Unite)