P10M lumber seized in Mandaue CityBy Chito Aragon
CEBU CITY, Philippines — Lumber products valued at P10 million were seized by a team composed of policemen and the Provincial Environment and Natural Resources Office (Penro) from a warehouse in Barangay (village) Paknaan, Mandaue City, in a raid conducted around 1 p.m. Wednesday.
Inspector Delfin Bontuyan of the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) in Central Visayas said their team conducted the raid based on the search warrant issued by Mandaue Regional Trial Court Branch 28 Judge Rafael Yrastorza on October 23, 2012.
Bontuyan said they had asked for the issuance of the search warrant against Jose Yap, owner of the Paknaan Center, the warehouse’s location, after receiving information of the presence of banned lumber products in the area.
He added that the CIDG-7 coordinated with Penro provincial officer Richard Abella for the joint operation.
Bontuyan said the raiding team found lumber products composed of narra, kamagong and mahogany kept at a warehouse inside the Paknaan Center.
In a phone interview, Abella said the seized lumber products were among those banned under Section 77 of Presidential Decree 707 as amended by Executive Order 277, in relation to E.O. 23 signed last year by President Benigno Aquino III.
Aquino’s E.O. 23 declared a moratorium on the cutting and harvesting of timber in natural and residual forests nationwide.
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