BOC exec cited for contempt in Senate probe on P6.8B smuggled shabu
An official of the Bureau of Customs (BOC) was cited for contempt for allegedly telling lies during Tuesday’s Senate hearing into the P6.8-billion worth of shabu that slipped through the Manila International Container Port (MICP) under the agency’s watch.
“I want him in jail until he tells the truth,” Senator Richard Gordon, chair of the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee, said referring to Jimmy Guban, of the Custom’s Intelligence and Investigation Service (CIIS) who has been on “floating status” since last month.
According to Gordon, Guban’s testimonies have already been refuted by the statements of other hearing witnesses.
“Pwedeng lumusot kayo sa Customs, pero dito hindi pwede (You may have slipped past Customs, but you cannot do it here),” the senator said.
Customs Commissioner Isidro Lapeña, meanwhile, said a “full-blown” investigation by the BOC and the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency has now started.
“Kaya nga he was held in contempt dahil marami siyang sinasabi na hindi totoo (He was held in contempt because he says a lot of lies). We’ll see how it will go,” he said.
Lapeña, however, denied he knew about Guban’s alleged illegal activities.
“Of course not. I don’t even know yung mga activities niya na ‘yan (I don’t even know his activities like that),” he said.
Gordon also instructed Lapeña to initiate a dismissal proceeding and the filing of appropriate charges against Guban.
The Senate Blue Ribbon Committee started its own investigation into the smuggling of illegal drugs after the seizure of 355 kilos of methamphetamine hydrochloride, also known as shabu, which were found inside two magnetic lifters at the MICP last August 7 consigned to “Vecaba Trading.” /muf / jpv
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