Latest Stories

BOC chief Biazon vows to smash supply chain of local drug rings


Bureau of Customs Commissioner Ruffy Biazon: A warning. RYAN LEAGOGO/INQUIRER.net FILE PHOTO

MANILA, Philippines – Citing the Bureau of Customs’ record drug haul of over P465.8 million last year, BOC Commissioner Ruffy Biazon has vowed to intensify further the agency’s campaign against narcotics smuggling by disrupting the supply chain of local drug syndicates, as well as the close monitoring of airport passengers for possible attempts to smuggle drugs into the country.

In a text message to the Philippine Daily Inquirer, Biazon said on Thursday that the BOC Task Force on Dangerous Drugs and Controlled Chemicals is “determined to do better than last year in order to make it more difficult and more costly for drug syndicates to conduct their illegal trade.”

The Department of Finance-attached agency will do its best to “disrupt the drug syndicates’ supply chain,” he disclosed.

“We will also work closely with other law enforcement agencies, such as the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency, in catching local counterparts of international drug syndicates,” said Biazon.

According to the BOC head, “we are encouraged by our record drug-related apprehensions last year.”

“This is due mainly to the increased capability and skill of Customs personnel in detecting drug mules,” he noted.

During last week’s “Kapihan sa Aduana” media forum, held at the BOC headquarters in Manila, Major Rizalina Parong, task force executive director for operations, reported that in 2012, Customs operatives “confiscated 53.5 kilos of methamphetamine hydrochloride, or shabu; 8.73 kilos of high-grade cocaine; 33.9 kilos of marijuana; 19 methylenedioxy methamphetamine tablets; 19 Alprazolam tablets; and six kilos of Piperonal,” among others.

The banned drugs, seized from at least 17 suspected drug mules at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport, were worth P465,897,591.59.

Parong cited the “enhanced monitoring of airport arrivals, especially those coming from high-risk countries for illegal drugs, in compliance with Commissioner Biazon’s order to spare no one in the bureau’s campaign against illegal drugs.”

“There is now a shift in the modus operandi of drug syndicates – from the local manufacture of illegal drugs to the importation of the same banned items – due to the tightened anti-drug smuggling drive of the BOC at the country’s major ports,” she said.

Parong explained that “since laboratory equipment and chemicals used in the manufacture of illegal drugs can no longer pass through customs ports, drug syndicates have resorted to using drug mules in their operations.”

Another indication that law enforcement agencies are winning the war against drug syndicates is the “continued increase in drug prices,” observed Parong.

“From P8,000 per gram two years ago, shabu is sold at P11,000 to P12,000 per gram these days,” she said.

Earlier in a statement, Biazon said the BOC would “never allow any international drug trafficking syndicate from making the Philippines a transhipment point for illegal drugs, much more make the country one of their markets.”

Customs personnel “will at all times be on the watch for illegal drug smuggling attempts…We will not hesitate to prosecute all those involved in the illegal drug trade,” he also said.

For his part, BOC Deputy Commissioner Peter Manzano, also head of the bureau’s Run After the Smugglers program, said they would closely monitor the criminal cases filed by the agency against suspected drug mules, including Roendo Ariata.

On Jan. 8, Ariata was caught by alert Customs personnel at Naia Terminal 2 with 7 kilos of high-grade shabu concealed in several boxes of powdered milk stuffed in his luggage.

He was a passenger on Philippine Airlines flight no. 307 from Hong Kong.

The drug haul was worth at least P56 million, according to the Bureau of Customs.

Follow Us

Follow us on Facebook Follow on Twitter Follow on Twitter

Recent Stories:

Complete stories on our Digital Edition newsstand for tablets, netbooks and mobile phones; 14-issue free trial. About to step out? Get breaking alerts on your mobile.phone. Text ON INQ BREAKING to 4467, for Globe, Smart and Sun subscribers in the Philippines.

Tags: Crime , Drugs , Nation , News , Smuggling

Copyright © 2014, .
To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.
Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:
c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94
  1. US teacher fired over comment on black president
  2. Filipinos, Dane re-enact crucifixion of Christ
  3. Magnitude-7.5 earthquake shakes Mexican capital
  4. Henares on Pacquiao bashing: I did not start this
  5. ‘No real progress in PH if dynasties not dismantled’
  6. More legal woes for Cedric Lee
  7. Massive infra spending set
  8. Easter crucifixions draw huge crowds
  9. ‘Mom, I love you,’ says text from student on sinking ferry
  10. Kim Henares needs a reprimand, says Cayetano
  1. Kim Henares needs a reprimand, says Cayetano
  2. Suspect in Vhong Navarro mauling tries to leave PH
  3. More legal woes for Cedric Lee
  4. Fr. Suarez says last Mass on Easter before returning donated land to San Miguel
  5. ‘Mom, I love you,’ says text from student on sinking ferry
  6. MH370 co-pilot made mid-flight phone call – report
  7. ‘No real progress in PH if dynasties not dismantled’
  8. I’ll follow my conscience on Estrada, says JV Ejercito
  9. Massive infra spending set
  10. OFW brings MERS virus to Philippines
  1. KL confirms Malaysian Airlines Flight MH370 ended in Indian Ocean
  2. MRT passengers pass the hat for 6-year-old Ashley
  3. Rookie, lady cops lauded for quick response to MOA heist
  4. Model Helena Belmonte wished ‘to slash her wrist and hope to die’
  5. Malaysia averts another air tragedy; pilot lands troubled plane safely
  6. Revilla says he was joking; Lacson stands by his story
  7. Revilla ‘consulted’ Lacson on how he evaded arrest
  8. Police rule out foul play in Helena Belmonte’s death as boyfriend is ‘traumatized’
  9. Cudia, dismissed for lying, got 99% in conduct
  10. Hammer-wielding robbers cause chaos at Philippines’ Mall of Asia


  • Flash floods hit 9 Tagum villages
  • No tsunami to hit PH after 6.9 quake jolts Solomon Islands–Phivolcs
  • Search resumes for bodies in Everest avalanche
  • 6.6-quake hits off PNG’s Bougainville – USGS
  • Bus passengers foil bombing in Sultan Kudarat
  • Sports

  • Duke’s Rodney Hood joining Jabari Parker in NBA draft
  • Phelps entered in 3 events at comeback meet
  • Boston prepares for huge wave of marathon visitors
  • Motivated LeBron James preps for postseason
  • Nadal ousted by Ferrer in Monte Carlo quarters
  • Lifestyle

  • Levine designs womenswear with help from fiancee
  • Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Nobel laureate, dies at 87
  • Ford Mustang turns 50 atop Empire State Building
  • Pro visual artists, lensmen to judge Pagcor’s photo contest
  • ‘Labahita a la bacalao’
  • Entertainment

  • Myx TV premieres Asian American ‘docu-series’
  • A nutty finale for ‘Scandal,’ TV’s craziest show
  • EXO postpones release of mini album ‘Overdose’
  • ‘X-men’ filmmaker slams ‘fabricated’ sex attack claims
  • Singer Chris Brown’s bodyguard on trial in DC
  • Business

  • Fiat-Chrysler to produce iconic Jeep in China from 2015
  • US commerce secretary spells out economic facet of ‘pivot to Asia’
  • Italy sells luxury state cars on eBay
  • Asian shares mostly up in quiet trade
  • Dollar up in Asia on US jobs data, Ukraine deal
  • Technology

  • Nasa’s moon-orbiting robot crashes down
  • Netizens pay respects to Gabriel Garcia Marquez
  • Nokia recalls 30,000 chargers for Lumia 2520 tablet
  • Facebook rolls out ‘nearby friends’ feature
  • Netizens seethe over Aquino’s ‘sacrifice’ message
  • Opinion

  • Editorial cartoon, April 17, 2014
  • A humbler Church
  • Deepest darkness
  • ‘Agnihotra’ for Earth’s health
  • It’s the Holy Week, time to think of others
  • Global Nation

  • We treasure our Sierra Madre
  • OFW from UAE tests negative for MERS-Cov–health chief
  • Multicultural flock marks Good Friday in San Francisco
  • Las Vegas ‘Pinoy Pride’ fest hails Filipino heritage
  • Marking Jesus’ journey on Good Friday
  • Marketplace