CAGAYAN – Four vessels believed to have entered the country illegally were seized by the Bureau of Customs (BOC) in Cagayan province on April 8 after failing to present documents showing that duties and taxes had been paid by its owners.
Earlier reports said foreign vessels have allegedly been smuggled into the country and are operating in Aparri, a riverside municipality in Cagayan.
After a mission order was issued by Customs Commissioner Nicanor Faeldon, the bureau’s Special Studies and Project Development Committee (SSPDC), with the help of barangay officials, located the MV Nova 1 at the Parradun Sur Quarry Site in Aparri.
It was discovered that the vessel was involved in the illegal quarrying of magnetic black sand along the Cagayan River.
Three other vessels, MV Vela 1, MV Vela 3 and Monte Cristo II, which were apparently used for the same purpose were found at the Hua Xia/Pine Sand compound in Barangay Tallungan, also in Aparri.
All four vessels are said to have an estimated value of P200 million.
“This latest seizure only points to the unyielding efforts of the BOC to put a stop to smuggling and other illicit trade activities, whether by land or sea,” said Faeldon, as he sent a strong warning to those in the business of importing vessels illegally.
“We will remain even more vigorous in our mission to run after violators ,” he added. #