The Department of Agriculture on Friday said its intensified campaign gainst smuggled agricultural products, confiscating a total of P27.3 million worth of smuggled refined sugar this month.
“The shipments consigned to Kanluran Consumer Goods Trading that originated from China were seized after a series of operations led by the Office of the Assistant Secretary for DA Inspectorate and Enforcement (DA-IE) at the Manila International Container Port (MICP),” the DA said in a statement.
It said the DA-IE worked with the Philippine Coast Guard, the Bureau of Customs, the DA-Bureau of Plant Industry and the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency for the anti-smuggling operations.
Their operations led to the seizure of smuggled refined sugar which was found in 11 container vans.
A series of anti-smuggling operations were conducted on Feb. 15 to 16, seizing a total P19.84 million worth of refined white sugar from eight container vans.
Some shipments were also misdeclared in an attempt to secure entry into the country.
“They (also) inspected three container vans on February 6 and discovered P7.44 million worth of refined white sugar instead of the declared motorcycle spare parts,” the DA said.
Meanwhile, the DA will be filing criminal cases against the shipment’s consignee for violation of Republic Act No. 10611 or the Food Safety Act of 2013 due to alleged misdeclaration and misclassification of the shipment.
Charges for violation of the Republic Act No. 10845 or the Anti-Agricultural Smuggling Act of 2016 shall also be filed, it said.
DA Assistant Secretary James Layug said there are still containers that will undergo physical inspection.