Bureau of Customs files steel smuggling raps versus Stellent Corporation
Five top officials and the customs broker of a steel importing firm faces smuggling related cases filed by the Bureau of Customs (BOC) for attempting to illegally import steel products worth around P14.3-Million.
Smuggling-related cases were filed by the BOC in the Department of Justice (DOJ) against officials of Stellent Corporation, led by Chairman of the Board Rico Rigor Cayunda Cinco (aka RecoRigor), Board Members’ Charmayne De La Peña Angeles, Asuncion Petra Angeles, Maria Rhezy G. Ilada, Ruge Robert S. Illada, and Customs Broker John Philip Malinao Yap for alleged unlawful importation of steel angle bars from China.
Cinco and the others are facing charges for violation of the Bureau of Products Standards Law for bringing into the country fifteen (15) 20-foot container vans of steel angle bars without the necessary Import Commodity Clearance (ICC) from the Department of Trade and Industry-Bureau of Product Standards (DTI-BPS). The said law requires importers to have proper BPS certification prior to importation of steel angle bar products. The respondents’ unlawful importation also violated section 3601 in relation to Section 101 of the Tariff and Customs Code of the Philippines (TCCP) as amended by Republic Act (RA) 7651. The shipment arrived at the Port of Manila from China in July 2014.
“Although there is a strong demand for steel products, we cannot let these illegal and unsafe products enter the local market,” said Customs Commissioner John P. Sevilla. “We are working very hard to prevent the technical smuggling of substandard products that pose danger to people who will use them.”
The smuggling attempt was foiled on the basis of an Alert Order issued by the BOC’s Intelligence Group after receiving derogatory information about the shipment. The Alert Order was hoisted over the shipment to place it under special attention and to allow Customs personnel to validate the veracity of the derogatory information.