DOJ files smuggling charges vs 2 Cagayan de Oro rice traders
MANILA, Philippines–The Bureau of Customs on Thursday filed another round of smuggling charges against two Cagayan de Oro City-based rice traders in the Department of Justice for the alleged illegal importation of 780,000 kilos of rice worth P31.2 million.
Respondents Elmer Caneta and Michael Abella, owners of EC Peninsula Commercial and New Dawn Enterprises, respectively, were charged with multiple counts of violation of the Tariff and Customs Code of the Philippines for failure to obtain import permits and for misdeclaring the shipments.
The two had been slapped similar charges in January by the BOC after they allegedly illegally imported over 1.3 million kilos of glutinous rice worth P82.68 million through the Port of Cagayan de Oro in November 2014.
According to the latest complaint filed by the bureau, the illegal rice shipments arrived in December 2014. The two firms allegedly misdeclared the rice as kitchenware and tiles.
“These rice traders had a clear intent to smuggle because they imported rice even though they did not have the proper permits. They even misdeclared their shipments to hide the true contents,” Customs Commissioner John Sevilla said.
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