smuggling
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Zamboanga Customs officials suspended over missing smuggled rice

Oct 04, 2018 - 6:14 PM

A 'visibly upset' President Rodrigo Duterte orders an investigation into 23,015 sacks of smuggled rice that had gone missing

Imported rice from Vietnam has arrived and are being unloaded and being readied for distribution at the NFA Warehouse in Quezon City. People have been lining up in NFA outlets waiting for supplies to sold at the markets. September 4, 2018. Photo by Jire Carreon/Rappler

PNP, PDEA, BOC officers implicated in P6.8-B shabu probe

Sep 28, 2018 - 7:32 PM

The probe points to possible collusion among officers from the frontline anti-drug agencies of Duterte's war on drugs

CONNIVANCE? Former members of the government's 3 anti-drug agencies are implicated in the alleged smuggling of shabu inside the Philippines. Graphic by Ken Bautista.

PDEA No. 2 official sacked amid missing P6.8-B shabu controversy

Sep 27, 2018 - 2:44 PM

Deputy Director General for Administration Ismael Fajardo is the highest-ranking government official implicated in the drug smuggling case

FIRED. PDEA's deputy chief for administration Ismael Fajardo is sacked amid the controversial search for the P6.8-billion shabu allegedly smuggled into the Philippines. Photo by Rambo Talabong/Rappler

House to detain Customs intel officer for contempt

Sep 27, 2018 - 1:26 PM

Resigned Bureau of Customs intelligence officer Jimmy Guban has been cited in contempt by the House committee on dangerous drugs

EMBATTLED AGENT. Resigned Customs intelligence officer Jimmy Guban at the joint probe of the House committees on dangerous drugs and good government. Photo by Rambo Talabong/Rappler

'Fall guy' in alleged shabu shipment received P2,000 from Customs officer

Sep 27, 2018 - 1:09 PM

Joel Maritana recants his earlier testimony where he said he asked SMYD Trading to be a consignee-for-hire to receive the alleged shabu-packed magnetic lifters shipment

'FALL GUY.' Joel Maritana at the joint probe of the House committees on dangerous drugs and good governance into the missing P6.8-billion shabu (methamphetamine). Photo by Rambo Talabong/Rappler

Shabu probe: Customs officer got 'commission' for magnetic lifter shipment

Sep 27, 2018 - 11:53 AM

(UPDATED) Customs intel officer Jimmy Guban admits receiving at least P10,000 in looking for the consignee-for-hire which received the magnetic lifters allegedly packed with one ton of shabu

EPICENTER. Bureau of Customs intelligence officer Jimmy Guban during the continuation of the Senate hearing P6.8 billion shabu shipment on September 26, 2018. File photo by Angie de Silva/Rappler

House resumes probe into missing P6.8-B shabu shipment

Sep 27, 2018 - 10:46 AM

What is expected to happen in the continuation of the House probe into the alleged missing P6.8-billion shabu shipment?

MORE QUESTIONS. The House of Representatives Committee on Dangerous Drugs resumes its probe into the alleged missing shabu.

Senate leaves nagging questions for House in P6.8-B shabu probe

Sep 27, 2018 - 9:25 AM

(UPDATED) More questions were uncovered by the Senate blue ribbon committee in the P6.8-billion shabu probe. The House committee on dangerous drugs and committee on good government now faces the pressure to answer them.

CONTINUATION. House committee on dangerous drugs Chair Ace Barbers (left) on August 14, 2018 during hearing and investigation into the missing P6.8 billion worth of shabu. File photo by Darren Langit/Rappler

Former X-ray chief: BOC did not follow SOP in scanning magnetic lifters

Sep 26, 2018 - 2:21 PM

The former X-ray chief of the Bureau of Customs says the current operators did not follow the SOP for X-rays that would have led to the physical examination of the magnetic lifters

LAPSES? Customs commissioner Isidro Lapena at the hearing of the suspected shabu shipment from Malaysia. September 19, 2018. Photo by Angie de Silva/Rappler

Gordon on magnetic lifters: 'May laman!'

Sep 26, 2018 - 12:36 PM

Senator Richard Gordon is inclined to believe that the magnetic lifters were packed with drugs, as claimed by the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency

SHABU SHIPMENT. Senator Richard Gordon at the investigation of the recent alleged shabu shipment contained in the magnetic lifters. File photo by Angie de Silva/Rappler

Senate to detain importer for lying in P6.8-B smuggled shabu hearing

Sep 19, 2018 - 6:09 PM

Senator Richard Gordon cited in contempt Marina Signapan, owner of SMYD Trading, refusing to believe her claim that she was merely paid to be the consignee of the illegal drugs shipment

DETAINED. Marina dela Cruz Signapan, owner of SMYD Trading, was cited with contempt by Sen. Gordon at the senate inquiry on P6.4 billion shabu shipment. September 19, 2018. Photo by Angie de Silva/Rappler

Customs alerted on Korean scrap truck smugglers at Davao port

Sep 09, 2018 - 3:08 PM

The Department of Trade and Industry and a Davao-based truck dealer say the trucks were smuggled from Korea without the proper registration

SMUGGLING. Used trucks were allegedly smuggled into the Port of Davao from Korea. Photo of the Port of Davao from Wikipedia

Duterte won't fire Piñol, NFA's Aquino over rice crisis

Sep 02, 2018 - 4:00 PM

'Maybe the laws are weak or are unenforceable. All we have to do is to improve on those laws, not necessarily fire people,' says President Rodrigo Duterte

RICE CRISIS. President Rodrigo Duterte says he will not fire Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Piñol, National Food Authority chief Jason Aquino, and other officials over the rice crisis. Screenshot from RTVM

Patterns emerge in 2017, 2018 shabu probes

Sep 01, 2018 - 6:30 PM

(UPDATED) The biggest difference between the 2018 and 2017 investigations? The existence of drugs has not been established in the 2018 shipment.

BACK IN HOT WATER. Bureau of Customs Commissioner Isidro Lapena (center) swears before The House committee on dangerous drugs on Tuesday, August 14, during hearing and investigation into the P6.8 billion worth of shabu or methamphetamine smuggled into the country from Taiwan. Photo by Darren Langit/Rappler

Empty or shabu-packed? X-ray scans of magnetic lifters revealed

Aug 30, 2018 - 9:01 PM

The House committee on dangerous drugs publishes X-ray scans taken by the Bureau of Customs

SCANS PUBLISHED. Photos courtesy of House Committee on Dangerous Drugs

Newsbreak Chats: Rice crisis, Arroyo as House Speaker, other top stories in August 2018

Aug 30, 2018 - 4:33 PM

Join us as we make sense of these stories: the ongoing rice crisis, the tussle between Customs and PDEA, changes in the House, backdoor abortion in the Philippines

PDEA chief insists magnetic lifters in Cavite contained shabu

Aug 30, 2018 - 1:20 PM

Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency chief Aaron Aquino tags as 'unfair' criticisms being hurled at him that he was wrong in announcing the magnetic lifters contained illegal drugs

DRUG CONTAINERS? PDEA agents secure 4 empty magnetic scrap lifters inside a warehouse in Cavite on August 10, 2018. Photo by Ben Nabong/Rappler

Finding P6.8-B shabu already 'wishful thinking'

Aug 30, 2018 - 12:16 PM

'I think that would be wishful thinking already, from all the indiciations that we have,' says Representative Romeo Acop

WHERE IS IT? PDEA agents secure four empty magnetic scrap lifters, similar to the two abandoned inside a 40-foot container at the MICP with an estimated 500 kilos of Shabu, inside a warehouse in Cavite on August 10, 2018. Photo by Ben Nabong/Rappler

Compelled by House panel, PDEA chief attends shabu shipment probe

Aug 30, 2018 - 11:09 AM

(UPDATED) Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency chief Aaron Aquino arrives at the House hearing on the same day his leave of absence from the agency ended

FINALLY PRESENT. PDEA chief Director General Aaron Aquino attends the House committee on dangerous drugs hearing on August 30, 2018. Photo by Mara Cepeda/Rappler

Piñol wants to legalize smuggled rice in Zamboanga-Basilan area

Aug 29, 2018 - 8:18 AM

The agriculture secretary even envisions a 'trading center' for smuggled rice in the Zamboanga-Basilan-Sulu-Tawi-Tawi region, saying that's the practice there anyway

Philippine Coast Guard seizes smuggled rice in Basilan

Aug 26, 2018 - 3:45 PM

A total of 22,000 bags of smuggled rice are found onboard two vessels

Photo from Philippine Coast Guard's Facebook page

Customs files charges vs shabu, smuggled sugar importers

Aug 17, 2018 - 10:31 AM

Customs Commissioner Isidro Lapeña says the BOC will file 'more criminal charges against erring importers and brokers in the coming weeks'

SMUGGLING RAPS. The Bureau of Customs files smuggling charges against importers of illegal drugs and smuggled sugar before the Bureau of Customs on August 16, 2018. Photo from Bureau of Customs

Taiwan protests claim it was source of P6.8-billion shabu

Aug 15, 2018 - 10:00 PM

'We solemnly condemn the irresponsible news reports,' says Taiwan

TAIWAN FLAG. Taiwan's national flag flutters beside Taipei 101 at Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall in Taipei on October 7, 2012. Photo by Mandy Cheng/AFP

Customs stops more magnetic lifters, says none carry shabu

Aug 15, 2018 - 8:10 PM

After performing two x-ray scans and scrutiny from sniffer dogs, the Bureau of Customs concludes the lifters are empty of illegal drugs

SEIZED. Two magnetic lifters are put on hold by the Bureau of Customs after they were allegedly misdeclared by its consignee. Photo by Inoue Jaena/Rappler

Pacquiao willing to be jailed just to kill drug lord in 'P6.8-B shabu' shipment

Aug 15, 2018 - 5:41 PM

'Magpapakulong na lang ako para ko ma-firing squad 'yung drug lord na 'yun na nagpasok sa Pilipinas,' says Senator Manny Pacquiao, who is also a pastor

Photo by Angie de Silva

Duterte says shabu in magnetic lifters 'pure speculation'

Aug 14, 2018 - 7:02 PM

President Rodrigo Duterte backs the assertion of Customs Chief Isidro Lapeña – that there was no shabu in the magnetic lifters found in Cavite

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte witnesses the condemnation and public destruction of contraband luxury vehicles and motorbikes at Port Irene in Sta. Ana, Cagayan on July 30, 2018. A total of 68 contraband luxury vehicles worth over P277 million and eight contraband luxury motorbikes worth over P19 million were destroyed as part of the President's campaign against smuggling and corruption in the government. Joining the President are Sec. Bong Go of the Office of the Special Assistant to the President, Cagayan Special Economic Zone (CEZA) Administrator and CEO Raul Lambino, and Bureau of Customs Commissioner Isidro Lapeña. ROBINSON NIÑAL JR./PRESIDENTIAL PHOTO

Filipina importer in P6.4-B shabu case denied bail

Aug 14, 2018 - 3:15 PM

The 4 Chinese and 2 Taiwanese nationals charged are still at large

Eirene Mae Tatad, one of Mark Taguba's co-accused in the P6.4B shabu shipment from China is presented by members of National Bureau of Investigation during press briefing on February 2, 2018. Photo by Inoue Jaena/Rappler

PDEA made 'crucial mistake' not quickly sharing shabu intel with Customs

Aug 14, 2018 - 2:49 PM

The suspect shipment was already taken out of the Manila International Container Port when the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency relayed the information to the customs bureau

'MISTAKE'. PDEA agents secure four empty magnetic scrap lifters, similar to the two abandoned inside a 40-foot container at the MICP with an estimated 500 kilos of Shabu, inside a warehouse in Cavite on August 10, 2018. Photo by Ben Nabong/Rappler

LIVE: House hearing on P6.8-billion shabu smuggled from China, Taiwan

Aug 14, 2018 - 2:17 PM

Watch the hearing live on Tuesday, August 14, at 10 am

PDEA urged to recant statement magnetic lifters contain P6.8-B shabu

Aug 14, 2018 - 1:43 PM

But Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency deputy director Ruel Lasala said they still affirm the magnetic lifters were used to smuggle illegal drugs

HOT SEAT. PDEA deputy director Adrian Alvariño and deputy directors Ruel Lasala and Ismael Fajardo Jr face the House committee on dangerous drugs on August 14, 2018. Photo by Mara Cepeda/Rappler

House panel to compel PDEA chief to attend P6.8-B shabu shipment hearing

Aug 14, 2018 - 11:30 AM

Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency chief Aaron Aquino has not cooperated in any House probes into drug smuggling, says retired police general-turned-congressman Romeo Acop

NO SHOW. PDEA chief Aaron Aquino fails to attend the House probe into the smuggling of P6.8-billion shabu into the country. Screenshot by Rappler

The week in photos: August 4-10, 2018

Aug 11, 2018 - 7:30 PM

This week's selection of photo highlights here and around the world

NO TO WAR. An Indian student wearing a mask poses with her hands painted with a slogans for peace during a rally to mark Hiroshima Day in Mumbai on August 6, 2018. Photo by Punit Paranjpe/AFP

Customs bureau files cases vs more 'ukay-ukay' importers

Aug 05, 2018 - 11:48 AM

'This is to show our unrelenting drive to run after the smugglers who are trying to cheat the government,' says Bureau of Customs Commissioner Isidro Lapeña

FIGHTING SMUGGLING. Customs officials file smuggling cases against 5 trading companies on August 3, 2018. Photo by Bureau of Customs

Smuggled Hummers to go to police, military – Duterte

Aug 01, 2018 - 6:58 PM

President Rodrigo Duterte saves 'more than 10' contraband Hummers from destruction to give them to law enforcers

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte inspects one of the contraband luxury vehicles before they were subjected to condemnation and public destruction at Port Irene in Sta. Ana, Cagayan on July 30, 2018. A total of 68 contraband luxury vehicles worth over P277 million and eight contraband luxury motorbikes worth over P19 million were destroyed as part of the President's campaign against smuggling and corruption in the government. Joining the President are Cagayan Special Economic Zone (CEZA) Administrator and CEO Raul Lambino and Sec. Bong Go of the Office of the Special Assistant to the President. ROBINSON NIÑAL JR./PRESIDENTIAL PHOTO

Customs chief Lapeña suspends 5 BOC officers in Cagayan de Oro

Jul 16, 2018 - 8:37 AM

Using fake papers, over a hundred containers are released from the Mindanao International Container Terminal in the past 6 months

BUSTED. Bureau of Customs Commissioner Isidro Lapeña (left) and Cagayan de Oro BOC Collector Jamail Marohomsalic show one sack of smuggled white sugar from Thailand. The smuggled goods were seized happened at the Mindanao International Container Terminal in Tagoloan, Misamis Oriental. Photo by Bobby Lagsa/Rappler

Customs seizes P120 million worth of shabu in Clark

Jun 11, 2018 - 1:50 PM

The shabu is found in packages declared as chairs and bar stools

BOC seized P120.36-M worth of shabu masked as chair, stools. Photo from the Bureau of Customs

LOOK: Customs destroys smuggled motorcycles, vehicles

May 30, 2018 - 9:55 PM

President Rodrigo Duterte witnesses the destruction of the smuggled motorcycles and vehicles at the Port Area in Manila

A backhoe runs over the cars which were part of the 122 smuggled vehicles destroyed during the public condemnation led by President Rodrigo Roa Duterte at the Bureau of Customs (BOC) Port Area in Manila on May 30, 2018. Malacañang Photo

Bato dela Rosa is president of newly formed PH Anti-Crime Council

May 29, 2018 - 12:59 PM

The Anti-Crime Council of the Philippines is expected to focus on bringing down smuggling in the country

FIRST PRESIDENT. Ronald dela Rosa is appointed as the first leader of the Anti-Crime Council of the Philippines. Sourced photo

DOJ suspends prosecutors who freed suspected jewelry smugglers

May 27, 2018 - 2:48 PM

Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra says complaints against the 3 Pasay City prosecutors will likely be filed before the Office of the Ombudsman

Newly appointed Department of Justice secretary Menardo Guevara talks to members of the media as he holds his first press conference inside the DOJ in Manila on April 10, 2018. Photo by Ben Nabong/Rappler

Customs employee, 2 others arrested for smuggling P3-M jewelry

May 12, 2018 - 7:30 PM

Authorities recover nearly 2 kilos of rings, earrings, pendants, bangles, chains, and bracelets from the 3 suspects

RECOVERED. The BOC puts on display the pieces of jewellery they recovered from the suspects. Photo from BOC.

Customs seizes P33 million in smuggled goods

May 07, 2018 - 4:20 PM

The smuggled goods include makeup, sacks of rice, office chairs, and used clothing or ukay-ukay

P33-M worth of various goods seized in two Manila ports. Photos from Bureau of Customs

Malaysia halts people-smuggling ship bound for Australia, New Zealand

May 06, 2018 - 5:10 PM

(UPDATED) Authorities find 127 Sri Lankans aboard the ship, and arrest 16 people allegedly involved in an international human trafficking network

Pulse Asia poll on Cha-Cha, Ombudsman on Paolo Duterte, Moon on North Korea | Evening wRap

May 02, 2018 - 7:38 PM

Watch Rappler's evening newscast with Mara Cepeda

Customs seizes cigarettes smuggled from China

Apr 16, 2018 - 5:35 PM

The Bureau of Customs says the cigarettes, worth P18.5 million, were misdeclared as 'industrial artificial fur texture'

BOC seizes P18.5-M worth of smuggled cigarettes. Photo from Bureau of Customs

Navy seizes smuggled rice from foreign ship near Zamboanga Sibugay

Apr 15, 2018 - 11:05 PM

The cargo vessel carried 27,180 sacks of Vietnam rice worth P67.950 million, says the Philippine Navy

Photo from Naval Forces Western Mindanao

BOC files smuggling charges vs 2 ATI officials, importers

Apr 07, 2018 - 5:39 PM

Customs Commissioner Isidro Lapeña says there will also be an investigation into the possible involvement of customs personnel in the illegal release of 105 containers

SHIPMENTS. In this photo taken November 8, 2012, a crane stacks shipping containers at the international container port in Manila. File photo by Jay Directo/AFP

Undeclared Korean SUV found in shipment at Davao port

Mar 22, 2018 - 5:20 PM

Findings of an x-ray scan conclude a vehicle was placed in between declared items. The scan is verified on Wednesday during a physical inspection.

SMUGGLED. Customs officials find an undeclared Hyundai sports-utility vehicle stuffed in between a used dump truck and a tractor head. Photo from BOC Davao

#ThewRap: Things you need to know, March 15, 2018

Mar 15, 2018 - 9:59 AM

Hello! Here are the stories you shouldn't miss this Thursday.

'IGNORE' UN PROBE. President Rodrigo Duterte has ordered the police to 'not respond' to UN rapporteurs if they investigate human rights abuses in his 'war on drugs.' Malacañang file photo

Spain arrests 155 over Chinese human trafficking ring

Mar 13, 2018 - 8:05 PM

The arrests, which included 4 alleged ringleaders detained in Barcelona, came after a 3-year investigation, police say in a statement

Philippines seizes hundreds of smuggled animals

Mar 13, 2018 - 6:29 PM

The cache of some 300 creatures, which included squirrel-like sugar gliders, wallabies and a threatened species of cockatoo, is one of the nation's largest wildlife busts

SMUGGLED WILDLIFE. An estimated P10 million pesos worth of smuggled imported and endangered species from Imdonesia were rescued from the black market in Pasay City by the Environmental Crime Division of the National Bureau of Investigation and Biodiversity Management of the DENR on Tuesday, March 13, 2018. Photo by Darren Langit