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PIA Press Release
2007/09/23

PGMA wants BOC anti-smuggling campaign bolstered by ICT

By Minerva BC Newman

Cebu, Philippines (23 September) -- President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo has instructed the Bureau of Customs (BOC) to speed up its Information and Communication Technology projects to improve its capabilities to stamp out smuggling in the bureau.

As can be recalled, the Department of Finance (DOF) in its efforts to eradicate graft and corruption at the BOC, created the Revenue Integrity Protection Service (RIPS) that would track down illegal activities of corrupt officials and employees from government revenue agencies specifically bribery, undervaluation of taxes and smuggling.

Earlier, the Department of Finance's Revenue Integrity Protection Service (RIPS) filed with the Office of the Ombudsman graft charges against six BOC personnel for allegedly undervaluing and illegally releasing 14 luxury cars which were appraised at only about P1 million six months ago.

Charged were Josephine Dullas, acting chief of the certificate of payment unit of the BOC-Subic; custom examiners Orlando Ronquillo, Rustico Mallari and Enrico Cruz and principal appraisers Ebrahim Pangkatan and Rodolfo Casis.

The six BOC employees were accused of conspiring with one another to undervalue the 14 luxury cars imported by Hidemitsu Trading Corp. and to illegally release the luxury vehicles from the Hidemitsu Trading Corp, a locator within the Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority.

The six BOC employees were accused of conspiring with one another to undervalue the 14 luxury cars imported by Hidemitsu Trading Corp. and to illegally release the luxury vehicles from the Hidemitsu Trading Corp, a locator within the Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority.

In a BOC revenue command conference at Malacanang recently President Arroyo wants the BOC to explore the possibility of funding its ICT program through the Millennium Challenge and the Presidential Anti-Graft Commission Accounts. She also wants the BOC to look into the possibility of funding a system that can track the inventory of petroleum, first in Subic. (PIA-Cebu) [top]

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