P35 M suit slapped against coral, rare marine life thieves | Inquirer News

P35 M suit slapped against coral, rare marine life thieves

By: - Reporter / @T2TupasINQ
/ 10:43 AM June 03, 2011

MANILA, Philippines—(UPDATE) The Bureau of Customs today filed a P35 million smuggling complaint before the Department of Justice against haulers and shippers of black corals, and other endangered marine species.

Charged with violating Section 91 of the Republic Act 8550, or the Fisheries Code of the Philippines, Fisheries Administrative Order 158 and Wildlife Resources Conservation and Protection Act of 2001, were the following : Exequiel D. Navarro, listed in the shipment’s manifest and bill of lading as the consignee of the illegally harvested marine resources; Olivia Lim Li, proprietress of the Zamboanga-based Li and Lim Trading, alleged shipper of the confiscated contraband; Kim L. Atillano, owner of the Zamboanga-based JKA Transport System, alleged cargo forwarding company tapped by the shipper; and Ireneo Penuliar and several John and Jane Does, all alleged to be involved in the transport of the cargo.

Section 91 of the Fisheries Code involves the ban on coral exploitation and exportation, while Fisheries Administrative order 158 prohibits the gathering, taking, collecting, transporting or possession for sale of endangered species of mollusks.


The cargo was intercepted last month at the Eva Macapagal Domestic Terminal Container Yard of the Port of Manila.

An inventory conducted by specialists from the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) and the Protected Areas and Wildlife Bureau (PAWB) revealed that the two seized containers were loaded with 163 stuffed hawkbills and green turtles; 21,169 pieces of black corals; 7,340 pieces of Trumpet and Helmet shells, and 196 kgs. of sea whips. All of these are threatened species that cannot be legally gathered, collected, traded nor transported.

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TAGS: BOC, Crime, Customs, environment, Government, Marine life, Smuggling

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