More luxury cars land in Cagayan despite ban


A fleet of imported used luxury vehicles—including Porsches, BMWs, Mercedes-Benzes, Hummers—await wash and polishing work at a car lot in Casambalangan village in Santa Ana, Cagayan, in this file photo. The Cagayan Special Economic Zone and Freeport in Sta. Ana has little or no comparison with the more developed Subic Bay Freeport in Zambales. MELVIN GASCON/INQUIRER NORTHERN LUZON

STA. ANA, Cagayan—A shipment of 446 used luxury cars, sport utility vehicles, sedans and vans arrived at Port Irene here on Saturday, even as a controversy continues to rage over the legality of such importations in the face of a Supreme Court ban and despite a moratorium that the government has issued against their registration.

The MV Zambales, a Panamanian-registered cargo vessel, docked at the pier here at 8:30 a.m. amid rain and wind that delayed its arrival by 18 hours.

Officials of the Cagayan Economic Zone Authority (Ceza), which oversees the port’s operations, have dismissed allegations the arrival of the car shipment was in defiance of a Supreme Court ruling that reinstated a government ban against the entry of used vehicles into the country.

At 10 a.m., the shipment was cleared for unloading by a boarding team representing the customs, quarantine and immigration bureaus. At 1 p.m., the ship’s ramp was lowered and stevedores began unloading the vehicles that originated from Yokohama, Japan, and Kaohsiung, Taiwan.

Leilani Alameda, deputy collector of the Bureau of Customs here who was on the team that inspected the cargo, said the processing of the shipment would be deferred because of standing orders from Customs Commissioner Ruffy Biazon.

“This (inspection) is part of our mandated function to inspect cargo arriving in the country. But we are under strict instructions not to entertain any applications to have these processed, until further notice,” she said.

Based on a shipping manifest obtained by the Inquirer, the shipment contained about 30 Hummers, 53 Mercedes Benz sports cars, 21 BMWs of various models, seven Porsches consisting of 911, Boxster and Carrera models, a Ferrari F335 Berlinetta and a Lamborghini Murcielago.

The shipment also included high-end, off-road trucks and SUVs. The rest were passenger vans, sedans and miniwagons.

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  • AllaMo

    ceza and customs, para naman kayong nakakauto e. Tangna nyong lahat!

  • Dag Erickson

    Untouchable MAFIOSOS OF CAGAYAN !!!!!   Let’s bring in the Army and arrest these thugs.

    • Avenger

      catch him if u can whahahaha!

  • $14334231

    nobody but nobody can stop the ponce enriles….they have their own law in cagayan, specifically, sta. ana where port irene is situated…’s called the JUAN PONCE ENRILE LAW…….stop writing articles about this used car monkey business….nakakakunsumi lang sa mga bloggers….the enriles are immune as to what other people say, so, what’s the use…from hereon in, i will not comment again with regards to port irene unless one or more of the enriles are subjected with warrant of arrest that can stand in court with an assurance of jail term……otherwise, cut this crap stories…….

  • salomeahmad

    Port Irene-” Welcome to the Used Car Baksakan Center of PH”. – Courtesy of JPE.

  • Angel Divera

    Hmmm lakas ng kapit kaya di natatakot.

  • Beng Atibo

    Why did Port Irene authorities allowed the vessel to be cleared for docking??? Ngayong nasa puerto na ang cargo nilang used cars. Ano ba ang gagawin nang gobyerno. Hindi ba nila alam ang trabaho nila???

    • geminimind

      because of papa Enrile

  • Goyong

    Leilani Alameda, deputy collector of the Bureau of Customs here obviously want this activity to continue. Somebody investigate the status of this person and we will know why.
    I doubt the loyalty of her person is to somebody instead of the bureau.

  • jikanhinia123

    Again this overt display of defiance to the rule of law arose not as a surprise since Enrile is the incognito leader of the syndicate holding office thereat CEZA. 

  • Pert Cabatana

    Culture of impunity with Enrile as the prime promoter. Why do Commisioner Biazon and PNoy seem to be helpless in the face of such defiance? 

  • calixto909

    This persistent defiance of the authorities of CEZA on the SC ruling is an alarming confrontation on law and order. It now depicts that our country though democratic in governance had nurtured autocrats in its bureaucracy who are now strikingly blatant to toy with an SC order. Biazon if truly he’s a partner of Pnoy in his matuwid na daan must relieve or file the necessary complaint against these insubordinate authorities of CEZA. 

  • geminimind

    It’s not always what you know,it’s who you know
    Who is who to be blamed,the government or the one who controls it?

  • Rovingmoron

    The cargo ship should have been made to turn back to where it came from. Why was it allowed to dock in Cagayan?

  • i_am_filipino

    Well, in other countries like UK, second hand cars are so cheap that anybody can buy. They can sell those second hand used car for 50,000 thousand pesos regardless of their brand.

  • 100345roselia

    I kept wandering why Abnoy’s “Daan Matuwid” cannot be enforced at Port Irene, Cagayan where
    hundreds of high-end used cars are being smuggled.  Am I made to understand that “Daan Baluktot” is being used to accommodate JPE’s illegal smuggling activities?  What’s so special
    about JPE?  Are you a coward?  What’s holding you?  Against GMA “matapang ka.”  Against
    JPE “your tail – like a dog – is in-between your 2 legs.” Nakakahiya ka sa taong bayan.

  • Ibongpipit

    Those luxurious, high end dream cars and SUV’s are far dead on arrival.  Like patients whose survival are  crucial, they still maintain stable vital signs pending resolution of conflicting SC and EO.  It always seems normal that when something huge and potentially anomalous transactions occur, conflicting laws and regulations comes into existence.   Are they like big event invitations where those who ought  to be present in the occasion are transformed and become welcomed participants for eventual carnage of their prey.  It also seems rare that those who care and victorious carrying out laws find due recognition. 

  • LegalJustice

    Mr. Ang Tuwid Na Daan President ( Pnoy ) IS NO DIFFERENT FROM HIS PREDECESSOR.

    “Ang Tuwid Na Daan” is ALL FOR POLITICAL SLOGAN TO BE USED by him.


    He never walk the talk – He is like former CJ Renato Corona.

  • boi skater

    Why were the cars even allowed to be unloaded if they are in
    violation of EO No.156? It appears that nobody is following the law and nobody
    is enforcing the law. Why are our government officials and law enforcers afraid
    to act and do their job? Are our officials this useless or maybe they are
    corrupt themselves. This situation is just so absurd. The blatant defiance is
    as clear as day and the uselessness of our government to implement the law are
    so sad and laughable.

    • Noel

      Everything is possible and allowed if the price is right.

  • Jason_Voorhees

    Bukod sa Christmas bonus isa pa itong katibayan na kayang kaya lokohin ni Tanda ang mga tao! Nauto niya lang kayo nung peoples power sa EDSA!

    • Noel

      Sa tutoo lang, handa na siyang magpadakip kay Marcos at Ver nang nabistong nagplano ng coup.  Pero suwerte at tinulungan siya ni Sin at Ramos.

      • Jason_Voorhees

        Baka kwentong kutsero na naman yan tulad ng mga pinagsusulat niya kesyo ambush daw! Sinong lolokohin niya? Kung gusto mo magpaloko sa kanya bahala ka! Buhay mo yan!

  • Komen To

    Daang Matuwid is only for the lowly, because the lords use Daang Baluktot. The sad thing is our BIDA is very quiet on this issue. Are you saying that it is less important than RH Bill? The campaign sorties? The claim of Sabah by Sultan Kiram? As in, quiet na lang dahil gusto nya happy ka

  • yonoh

    nakakatawa itong mga politiko natin……………..lalo na si lolo ala na ngang makain ang mga pinoy eh inuuna pa ang mga bulok na mamahalin na kotse……………

  • fernan107

    anong mangyayari sa bayan natin kung ang mga politikong katulad ni enrile na isang senador ay di sumusunod sa mga utos ng mga nakaupo sa gob?inu UNA ANG BULSA bago ang taong bayan…..isaksak na lang nila ang mga bulok na saksakyan sa baga nila dahil kawawa lang ang makabili sa mga bulok na sasakyan na ito…ka indo naman.

  • sanc olde

    Just who would be injured if those cars are sold cheaply in this country? Anybody who wants a protected economy should face reality. The freer the trade of a country the better off its citizens. Take the case of Romania, the basket case of Europe before 1992. Its economic growth has been astronomical since it transitioned to a free market. It even  has the fastest internet, faster than Japan. If somebody smuggle cars, rice, clothes…the treasures of the whole world into my house why not, the door is wide open. All this clueless people who are fond of a protected economy have no clue. A protected economy is doomed to fail. North Korea, and the China before are the best argument for protected economy. The free market rewards competent business while at the same time punishes the incompetents for wasting society’s scarce resources to make products which the market doesn’t want. The 40-60 rule on corporate ownership is a stup!d law. If a foreigner can provide us with a better train, a better internet connection, etc etc, by all means why not. Am not for propping up incompetents among us just because he is born here.

    • koolkid_inthehouse

      The issue is that the importation is not open to all ports in the PHilippines. 
      Why port Irene only?

      • sanc olde

         Deciding what port or ports can import or not used cars is treating the symptoms. The root cause is the evil policy of protectionism of some industry. Protecting our car industry (Do really have any? funny they all sound so Japanese.) to protect the local car labor force is unfair for the rest of us. How long are we going to protect them? When can they stand on their own? If they can’t face the competition, do we have to prop them up for eternity? I believe that their should be separation between the state and the economy, like separation of church and state. It is because of this meddling with one with the other that breeds corruption and the politics of pull.

  • Noel

    Days after Enrile went to Cagayan and Biazon went to Port Irene, we don’t here of it anymore.  I told you so.  They were cooking something and now and it’s back to normal again.

    • RAMONS

       sarap talaga magtrabaho sa gobyerno. messenger lang sa customs may sariling bahay at lupa at may sasakyan pa.

  • koolkid_inthehouse

    WOW lots of gas guzzlers.  You have to own a gas station to drive these Hummers.

    Anyway the smuggler kingpin will smooth it out, and I’ll bet, this importations will continue.  Both sides will be happy going home.  Mr. Enrile & Mr. Biazon will say, ‘if you’re happy, I’m happy’. 

  • doublecross

    dami nawalang taxes nito.

    • sanc olde

       In a free market smuggling is a misnomer. I introduce Bastiat’s The Law for you.

      • doublecross

        i studied the bastiat’s law….when a developing country, this law never applies.

      • sanc olde

         what part does not apply to a developing country?

  • kalealaskador

    Maybe this administration is afraid the “Republic of Enrile” will secede from the Philippines if smugglers are not allowed to bring in cars via Port Irene.

  • sanc olde

     I think to protect our local cell phone manufacturers, steel manufacturers, tv manufacturers, motorcycle manufacturers, textile manufacturers, etc etc., we must ban all imports. I think we would all live happily ever after if we manufacturer locally everything that we need and want. We should just export export export and not import anything. This will make our country prosperous.

  • wawa2172

    I guess free port should be let alone with its mandate. However since the SC has spoken then Port of Irene should prevent the imported cars to get out of the port. What the free port management should do is to make an appeal on the issue of import ban. If the SC decide on the issue with finality then that is it. However, I guess importing cars should be allowed especially for those who cannot afford to buy the brand new one. 

    • Ngiping Dilaw

      Panahon pa ni Ramos yang Port Irene.Nabasa ko na Port Irene was given autonomy to operate as SEPARATE CUSTOMS TERRITORY SIMILAR TO HONG KONG. Marami ding legal exporters ng used cars dyan. Di tulad ng sinasabi ng iba na parang smugglers lang ang nadyan. Si Juan Ponce Enrile ang author ng CEZA. Panahon ni Ramos itinayo yan.

  • Ngiping Dilaw

    Cagayan Economic Zone act of 1995 was authored by sen. Enrile. Autonomous daw yan. Ang administrator ay si Jose Mari Ponce. Halos 17 years na yang port Irene na yan at talagang dyan ang bagsakan ng used cars. Ang tagal na nyan ngayon lang nagkukumahog sina Biazon na i check yang used car smuggling daw dyan. Sa tatlong taong Presidente si Aquino ngayon lang napuna yang port na yan? Dahil ba di kapartido si Enrile? Ayaw sa smuggling bubuwagin ang smugglers at ibibigay din sa bagong smugglers? Ang nariyan daw ay mga Japanese, Chinese at American na mga suppliers ng used cars. Baka aalisin yung iba at gagawing eksklusibo para sa Chinese businessmen lang. Maganda nga ngayon ibat ibang lahi namumuhunan baka pag pinasok nina PNOY yan puro Chinese lang na kuripot magpasweldo!

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