By Betheena Kae Unite

A shipment supposed to contain fishballs from China was found filled with boxes of smuggled agricultural products worth P53 million at the Port of Manila (POM) Wednesday.

BOC MANILA SMUGGLED AGRI - Smuggled agri products worth P53-M found in 16 containers declared as fishballs from China

Bureau of Customs intercepts smuggled agricultural products worth P53 million at the Port of Manila Wednesday, September 11, 2019. (Bureau of Customs / Facebook page / MANILA BULLETIN)

Sixteen containers of agricultural products such as carrots, onions, broccoli, and potatoes were found during inspection, contradicting the goods declaration as fishballs, the Bureau of Customs (BOC) said.

The shipment arrived at the port on August 8 from China and consigned to Shinerise Trading Service, according to POM District Collector Arsenia Ilagan. It was processed by Customs Broker Johnna Philipian Cristobal Aceveda.

It was learned that the consignee only declared the shipment as fishballs with total declared duties and taxes of P2,542,882, which is way lower than the estimated value of the actual goods found.

According to the inventory of customs examiners the carrots were valued P20.080 million, the onions were P20.080 million, broccoli at P10.040 million and potatoes amounting to P2.510 million.

The shipment was alerted six days after it arrived at the port for violation of Section 1400 “Misdeclaration, Misclassification and Undervaluation in Goods Declaration,” in relation to Section 1113 “Property Subject to Seizure and Forfeiture,” of the Customs Modernization and Tariff Act.

A warrant of seizure and detention was issued on September 4 against the shipment due to the violations.

Ilagan has already ordered the cancelation of the consignee’s accreditation while the customs broker is under investigation.

In August, shipments of agricultural goods, including rice, were also seized at the Port of Zamboanga and at the Manila International Container Port.

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