Illegally cut lumber seized in Zamboanga del Sur
PAGADIAN CITY, Zamboanga del Sur, Philippines — Authorities intercepted two pump boats loaded with some 2,000 board feet of illegally cut lumber off the coast of Barangay Mama, Dumalinao town in Zamboanga del Sur on Saturday, the maritime police reported.
Chief Master Sgt. Berjoe Tianok of the 903rd Maritime Police Station based here said the items, valued at P100,000, had been transported from Barangay Tadlao to Barangay Rebokon in Dumalinao town when intercepted along the way.
He said they had to seize the lumber because of the failure of its buyer and the pump boat operators to present the pertinent documents.
He said the two boats operated by Edgar Delos Santos of Barangay Rebokon and Jeffrey Aupe of Barangay Tadlao were supposed to deliver the lumber to buyer Amado Amodia of Purok Baroy, Rebokon.
Amodia told the Inquirer that the owner of the lumber had assured him the items already had the necessary documents. He also said he already paid the owner around P50,000 as he would use the lumber to build his house in Barangay Rebokon.
“Most of us here in Rebokom buy the wood we need from [Barangay] Tadlao. That’s why I really believed him [the owner] when he told me all documents were already in order,” Amodia said.
Pacifico Cabrido Jr., a member of the Provincial Environment and Natural Resources (PENR) monitoring and enforcement section, said the lumber was taken from Antipolo and Bakan trees, which are among the indigenous tree species prohibited from being cut without necessary permits.
According to Cabrido, the mere possession of such lumber is a violation of Presidential Decree No. 705, or the Revised Forestry Code.
The seized items will be donated to government agencies like the Department of Education (DepEd) after the filing of administrative and criminal charges against the violators, Cabrido said.