MICP Apprehends Smuggled Medicines Declared as PPE

As the Bureau of Customs (BOC) continues its campaign to protect the country’s borders from the entry of illegal and improperly imported goods, the Manila International Container Port (MICP) through its Assessment Division, Customs Intelligence and Investigation Service (CIIS), Enforcement and Security Service (ESS) and incoordination with the Port Inspection Division (PID) on September 15, 2020 apprehended a shipment of illegally imported medicines.

Taking advantage of the current pandemic, the alleged consignee, F.E.R.N. Freight Enterprises, declared the shipment as Personal Protective Equipment in particular facemasks. Through the collective efforts of MICP personnel, the shipment was discovered to contain medicines and medicinal ointments. The said shipment did not have any import permits or clearances from pertinent government agencies.

A warrant of seizure and detention (WSD) was issued against shipment by MICP District Collector for the possible violation of Section 1113 (f) and Section 117 in connection with Section 1401 of Republic Act No. 10863 otherwise known as the “Customs Modernization and Tariff Act” (CMTA).

In his statement, Collector Rosales aired his concern on the possible adverse effects of using medicines which did not go through the necessary clearances with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Rosales further assured that MICP shall remain vigilant in performing the Port’s mandate to protect the country’s borders under the leadership of BOC Commissioner Rey Leonardo B. Guerrero.