Ship grounded for illegal copra load

Bandera (Mindanao) - - FRONT PAGE -

CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY —Customs officials here grounded a cargo vessel after its crew members failed to present documents for some 1,450 tons of copra it brought in from Indonesia

Alvin Enciso, intelligence chief of the Bureau of Customs (BOC) in Northern Mindanao, said MV Jake Vincent Seis, which came from Indonesia, was

heading to an oil milling facility in Jimenez town in Misamis Occidental province to deliver copra on Aug. 28 when it was intercepted by the BOC team and the Philippine Coast Guard.

Government personnel also found out that its special permit to ply the Brunei Darussalam-Indonesia-Malaysia-PhilippinesAsean Growth Area (BIMP-Eaga) route was fake.

“After days of verification, it turned out that the cargo had no proper import permit,” Enciso said. “Worse, the ship’s crew presented a fake document in convincing Customs personnel that it was a general cargo vessel plying the BIMP-Eaga areas.”

The Maritime Industry Authority later confirmed that the vessel’s special permit to operate in the BIMP-Eaga was fake.

Enciso said the government would have lost P35 million in collectible duties and taxes had the shipment passed through the BOC.

Under the BIMP-Eaga agreement, cargoes transported between BIMP countries are duty and tax exempt.

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