P80-M worth of smuggled cigarettes, face masks seized

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Up to P80 million worth of and into the country were seized by the Bureau of Customs during a raid on a warehouse in Bulacan last Wednesday.

Reports said the personnel of the Enforcement and Security Services Quick Reaction Team (ESS-QRT) and Customs Intelligence and Investigation Service (CIIS) raided the warehouse in Brgy. Sta. Rosa, Marilao in the said province by virtue of the Letter of Authority (LOA) issued by BOC Commissioner Rey Leonardo Guerrero.

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Authorities discovered 1,000 master cases of various smuggled cigarettes and 648 boxes of N95 face masks which logos and designs were copied from famous fashion brands.

Guerrero said an estimated P80 million worth of contraband is already under the care of the ESS Security Coral at the Port of Manila for further inventory and investigation.

According to the BOC, the operation is still part of protecting Filipino consumers from the dangers posed by counterfeit health products during the pandemic period. The raids also aims prosecuting those who do not pay the correct taxes on products imported into the country.

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Last month, Bureau of Customs (BOC) personnel seized up to P107 million worth of cigarettes when suspects attempted to smuggle them using fake papers into the Port of Davao in Davao City recently.

According to a report by the BOC-Port of Davao, the shipment was confiscated last July 14, containing 1,205 boxes of Astro brand cigarettes and 942 boxes of YS brand cigarettes.

Also read: Roque: Philippines not Southeast Asia’s new COVID-19 hotspot


COVID-19 cases in the Philipipines now 122,754

Before the end of the first week of August, the number of confirmed coronavirus diseases (COVID-19) cases in the Philippines increased again, the Department of Health (DOH) confirmed on Friday.

Today, it spiked to 122,754 after the Philippines recorded an additional 3,379 cases today, August 7.

“There were eighty-five (85) duplicates that were removed from the total case count. Of these, fifty-eight (58) recovered cases and six (6) deaths have been removed,” DOH explained in a statement.

“Moreover, twenty-three (23) cases that were previously reported to have recovered has been validated to have died and were included in the count of new deaths,” DOH added.

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