BOC Releases 7,000 Bags of Smuggled Rice for Bagyong Ompong Survivors

The Bureau of Customs (BOC) under Customs Commissioner Isidro Lapeña has released 7,000 bags of smuggled rice previously confiscated by the BOC, following the directive of Finance Secretary Carlos G. Dominguez III to donate the contraband to those affected by Bagyong Ompong as agreed upon by Pres. Duterte.

The BOC Public Information and Assistance Division said the rice donation came from 14 20-footer containers that the country’s second biggest tax-collection agency had earlier confiscated.

The smuggled rice which will be distributed by the BOC to Ompong-affected areas, came from the smuggled items that enter the country without the correct import duties and other taxes being paid.

According to information presented by Deputy Commissioner Edward James A. Dy Buco, the BOC said the deed of donation for Bagyong Ompong victims was signed by Customs Commissioner Isidro S. Lapeña last Friday. Finance Secretary Dominguez also approved the donation on Friday as well.

The Bureau of Customs is an agency attached to the Department of Finance. Sec. Dominguez earlier instructed the BOC to release all confiscated rice, as well as other food items in the BOC's possession, and donate them to the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD).

Based upon the Customs Modernization and Tariff Act, rice and other seized goods-such as food, clothing, and medicines-can be donated to the DSWD.

Source: PNA