BOC, PDEA foil P1.8-B shabu ship­ment

Sun.Star Pampanga - - NATION! - (PNA)

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ship­ment, con­tain­ing 276 kg. of shabu worth PHP1.8 bil­lion and packed to ap­pear like tea prod­ucts, was in­ter­cepted by the Bureau of Cus­toms (BOC) and the Philip­pine Drug En­force­ment Agency (PDEA) at the Manila In­ter­na­tional Con­tainer Port (MICP) Fri­day night.

MICP Dis­trict Col­lec­tor, lawyer Eras­tus Sandino Aus­tria, said the il­le­gal drugs, de­clared as plas­tic resin, were found in­side a 40-foot con­tainer van that ar­rived at the Manila North Har­bor last March 17.

“When the con­tainer was in­spected, Cus­toms and PDEA found 12 sacks con­tain­ing items wrapped in clear cel­lo­phane and sealed in foil pack­ag­ing de­signed to look like tea prod­ucts,” Aus­tria said in a state­ment.

“Upon test­ing the sam­ple of the sub­ject sub­stance, au­thor­i­ties were able to con­firm that the items were shabu,” he added.

The ship­ment was al­legedly con­signed to Wealth Lo­tus Em­pire Corp.

The con­tents of the in­ter­cepted ship­ment will be in­ven­to­ried, and the il­le­gal drugs found were turned over to PDEA for proper han­dling and in­ves­ti­ga­tion.

PDEA Direc­tor Gen­eral Aaron Aquino said the ap­pre­hen­sion was a re­sult of their close co­or­di­na­tion with their coun­ter­parts from Viet­nam.

“At 2 a.m. to­day (Fri­day), PDEA re­ceived in­for­ma­tion from our in­ter­na­tional coun­ter­parts from Viet­nam that the con­tainer aboard a ship named Cal­lao Bridge V145E from Ho Chi Minh City, Viet­nam ar­rived in Manila. The said ship con­tained huge amounts of il­le­gal drugs,” Aquino said.

Act­ing on the re­port, the Cus­toms In­tel­li­gence and In­ves­ti­ga­tion Ser­vice pro­ceeded with the pro­fil­ing of the sub­ject con­tainer aboard the ves­sel and nar­rowed the sus­pi­cion to­wards one ship­ment.

Aus­tria im­me­di­ately or­dered an X-ray ex­am­i­na­tion, fol­lowed by the full phys­i­cal ex­am­i­na­tion of the con­tainer of the sus­pected ship­ment in the pres­ence of rep­re­sen­ta­tives of the PDEA, and the Philip­pine Coast Guard.

Based on the re­port, the in­ter­cepted ship­ment of drugs was pro­cessed by cus­toms bro­ker Jane A. Castillo with busi­ness ad­dress at Sta. Lu­cia St., In­tra­muros, Manila.

The BOC of­fi­cial at­trib­uted the suc­cess­ful ap­pre­hen­sion of the il­le­gal drugs through strength­ened link­ages, proper co­or­di­na­tion, in­tel­li­gence shar­ing and close part­ner­ship PDEA has with other agen­cies.

“The Bureau of Cus­toms and PDEA re­main vig­i­lant in or­der to in­ter­cept such kind of ship­ments,” Aquino said.

With this, Cus­toms Com­mis­sioner Rey Leonardo Guer­rero said he will im­me­di­ately re­voke the cus­toms ac­cred­i­ta­tion of the in­volved con­signee and cus­toms bro­ker, and ap­pro­pri­ate charges will be filed against them.

He also or­dered all Dis­trict Col­lec­tors to be on alert and to ex­am­ine all other sim­i­lar items to en­sure that our bor­der is safe from the pos­si­ble en­try of il­le­gal drugs. The gov­ern­ment has part­nered with a pri­vate com­pany in pro­mot­ing oc­cu­pa­tional safety and health (OSH) to fur­ther en­sure a healthy and pro­duc­tive work­force.

Depart­ment of La­bor and Em­ploy­ment (DOLE) Sec­re­tary Sil­vestre Bello III said the part­ner­ship with 3M Philip­pines will pro­vide joint train­ings and ad­vo­cacy cam­paigns for en­hanced en­force­ment of the OSH stan­dards to ad­vance the over­all well-be­ing of Fil­ipino work­ers across all in­dus­tries.

He added that the agree­ment will also al­low in­for­ma­tion and tech­ni­cal re­source shar­ing.

“The pur­pose of the agree­ment is to pur­sue co­op­er­a­tive pro­jects, pro­grams, and ini­tia­tives geared to­wards de­vel­op­ing and sus­tain­ing a cul­ture of safe, healthy, and pro­duc­tive work­force, which is a key in­gre­di­ent to­wards sus­tained de­vel­op­ment,” Bello said in a state­ment on Sat­ur­day.

Un­der the mem­o­ran­dum of agree­ment signed by the par­ties on Wed­nes­day, the pri­vate com­pany will pro­vide ad­vance tech­ni­cal train­ings and ex­per­tise on the ap­pro­pri­ate use of Per­sonal Pro­tec­tive Equip­ment to DOLE per­son­nel, specif­i­cally the la­bor in­spec­tors who con­duct tech­ni­cal safety in­spec­tions.

A joint pol­icy re­search will also be con­ducted for the de­vel­op­ment of OSH poli­cies and reg­u­la­tions to fur­ther sus­tain a cul­ture of safe and healthy work­force by up­hold­ing just and hu­mane work­ing con­di­tions.

“En­sur­ing the safety of our work­ers is among our top pri­or­i­ties and we hope that this part­ner­ship will bring pos­i­tive re­sult and de­velop stronger co­op­er­a­tion for en­hanced pro­mo­tion of oc­cu­pa­tional safety and health,” Bello added.

3M Philip­pines is a global science com­pany that uses 46 tech­nol­ogy plat­forms, with in­te­grated team of sci­en­tists and re­searchers in cre­at­ing in­no­va­tions and break­throughs to im­prove the daily lives of peo­ple all over the world.

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