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Informants’ tip crucial in fight vs illicit cigarette trade

Authorities question the driver carrying 50 reams of smuggled cigarettes intercepted at a checkpoint in Barangay Sirawan, Toril District, Davao City.

INTELLIGENCE information from concerned citizens has been a great help in the government’s campaign against smuggling and sale of illegal cigarettes as shown in the latest enforcement activities.

The latest proofs giving credence to the informant tips to authorities were the successful operations executed at checkpoints in Parang, Maguindanao and Davao City.

Authorities at a checkpoint in National Highway, Barangay Macasandig, Parang, Maguindanao waited until 1am, last June 6, following an informant’s tip that an aluminum van with plate number CBB-3079 was transporting smuggled cigarettes from Lanao del Sur.

Reports from Maguindanao del Norte Police Provincial Office said this led to the confiscation of 10 master cases of Fort, a brand of smuggled cigarettes estimated to be worth P150,000.

Operatives arrested the vehicle driver Nasser Ladguia Montaner, who is now detained at the Parang PNP. He is undergoing investigation to determine the owner of the smuggled cigarettes.

Police are now looking into the identity of the persons behind the illegal activity after the driver confessed that the contraband was for distribution in various areas of Maguindanao.

Authorities in Maguindanao had beefed up sustained trade enforcement activities in addressing the rampant illicit cigarette trades in Mindanao notably smuggling and the sale of illegal cigarettes.

In another trade enforcement where authorities also acted on an intelligence information, combined forces of Task Force Davao and the Toril police intercepted smuggled cigarettes at a checkpoint in Barangay Sirawan, Toril District, Davao City on June 1.

Upon checking, the suspect, identified as Abdullah Sawaib, failed to present documents regarding the legality of his goods.

Confiscated from the vehicle were 50 reams of Grow Blue, another illegal brand of cigarettes being distributed and sold in Mindanao.

Both suspects from Parang, Maguindanao and Toril District Davao City, are facing criminal charges for violating various provisions of the Customs Modernization and Tariffs Act (CMTA) and the National Internal Revenue Code pending investigation of the sources of the smuggled cigarettes. (PR)


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