P200M smuggled cellphones, watches seized in Clark

July 14, 2019
Smuggled cellphones
MEMBERS of Task Force Aguila and the Bureau of Customs unload the hundreds of boxes of smuggled cellphones and watches seized from a van exiting SCTEX. BERNARD GALANG

CLARK FREEPORT, Pampanga  -- At least P200 million worth of imported cellular phones and sports watches were confiscated by members of Task Force Aguila near the exit of Subic-Clark-Tarlac Expressway here over the weekend.

Arnel Maguillo, deputy director of the anti-smuggling task force, said  thousand pieces of Huawei, Vivo, Xiaomi and other Chinese brand cellular phones, tablets and sports watches were in a two large canter van vehicles and were about to exit the free port zone when apprehended.

The drivers failed to present necessary documents to bring the gadgets out of the freeport.

Inside the closed van trucks were hundreds of boxes containing the cell phones, sports watches, and USB drives and cables.

Maguillo said a tipster informed them that large volume of electronic devices were being loaded into two canter vans at the United Parcel Service facility  and will be transported outside of the freeport zone.

This prompted the task force to set up a checkpoint near the SCTEX exit and that resulted in the apprehension of the two vehicles with plate numbers CAP 6868 and CAK 7736 owned by Jefferson Gan and Jairus Reyes, who turned out to be both employees of the Bureau of Customs (BoC) here.

The drivers of the trucks and the consignee of the shipment from Hong Kong, identified as Marvin Macaligar and a resident of Floridablanca, Pampanga, were brought to the Task Force Aguila office here for questioning.

During interrogation, Macaligar, who initially introduced himself as a truck helper,  admitted to TF director retired Maj. Gen. Francisco Cruz Jr. that his name was just being used by his “boss” whom he identified as Jefferson Gan.

The task force also learned from the drivers that have picked-up the shipments from the UPS here and  unloaded  them to the Tierra Tech  office located on Arellano Street in Palanan, Makati City for 20 times already.

The seized items were turned over to the BoC here  and the charges against the persons behind the attempted smuggling are now being readied.