It seems that smuggled cars being intercepted by the authorities are becoming a weekly occurrence. Just recently, the Bureau of Customs managed to nab three luxury vehicles at Manila Port.
The smuggled shipment included a brand new 2021 Toyota Land Cruiser, a 2016 Nissan GT-R (with a NISMO kit), and a 2021 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1. The BOC estimates that the shipment, which was consigned by a local company and imported from the UAE, is worth PHP 16 million; that number may seem to be exaggerated somewhat.
According to Alvin Enciso, Chief of the Customs Intelligence and Investigation Service (CIIS), the three vehicles were found hidden in a shipment full of used tires. A warrant of seizure and detention (WSD) has already been issued on the shipment due to the presence of the smuggled vehicles.
An investigation is already underway, along with the filing of charges against Adfinest Marketing Corp for possible violation of Section 1400 in relation to Section 1113 of Republic Act 10863, or the Customs Modernization and Tariff Act (CMTA). The company could also be charged for importing used vehicles without authority from the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI).
“We will continue to monitor these shipments because there has been a series of smuggled vehicles trying to come into the country. That has been evident this past month alone,” said Enciso.
As mentioned earlier, this is not the first time a shipment of smuggled vehicles was intercepted by the BOC. The government agency previously nabbed two other shipments at the port last May 26 and June 2. The first shipment saw the BOC seize a Porsche Boxster, a Mercedes-Benz SLK, and two Toyota MR-S sports cars. Meanwhile, the second shipment included a Ferrari F430 Scuderia, a Mercedes-Benz E220, and a Mercedes-Benz SLK 55.
“We have put everything in place to catch these smugglers. We won’t be satisfied with what we’ve achieved and won’t stop exerting more efforts in our campaign until the message is clear to them,” said Rey Leonardo Guerrero, Bureau of Customs Commissioner.