The Bureau of Custom’s (BOC) team against smugglers has filed 33 cases against agricultural product smugglers before the justice department.

The (BOC), which claims to be “steadfast” in its efforts to end agricultural product smuggling, stated in a statement that its BATAS, or Bureau’s Action Team Against Smugglers, filed cases from January to present against 33 importers and 11 customs brokers for unauthorized agricultural product importation.

Republic Act No. 10845, also known as the Anti-Agricultural Smuggling Act of 2016, has been cited by the BOC in 22 of the complaints that have been filed.

Also out of these figures, nine cases were brought against nine importers and five customs brokers due to the increased border protection measures implemented by the BOC. These cases were brought under the administration of Customs Commissioner Yogi Filemon Ruiz.

With duties, taxes, and fees totaling P107.19 million, the items that are the subject of the cases brought by the Bureau have a total dutiable value of Php251.61 million.

Under the leadership of Ruiz, the BOC further strengthened risk profiling and inspection of shipments and warehouses, resulting in the filling of appropriate cases against unscrupulous individuals.

Following the directive of President Ferdinand Marcos Jr., BOC continues to heighten its efforts to suppress agricultural smuggling that heavily affects the local farmers while protecting the welfare of the citizens.

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