BY GILBERT P. BAYORAN
The Bureau of Customs reported yesterday that it had seized P7 million worth of secondhand goods, locally known as “ukay-ukay”, from a warehouse in Brgy. Villamonte, Bacolod City recently.
A composite team, led by Port of Iloilo’s Customs Intelligence and Investigation Service Field Station, Enforcement and Security Service–Customs Police Division personnel, and members of Customs Border Protection District VI Team, in coordination with the Philippine National Police and officials of Barangay Villamonte, inspected the storage facility on May 3 based on a Letter of Authority signed by BOC Commissioner Rey Leonardo Guerrero.
The BOC composite team said it discovered bales of ukay-ukay that included used clothing, shoes, bags, bed sheets, and curtains.
District collector Ciriaco Ugay and collector Renevic Soliman of the Sub-Port of Pulupandan supervised the inventory of the seized goods conducted by Customs examiners Jessie Nallos and Samson Alonsagay II on May 4. The BOC said that further investigation will be conducted for the possible filing of charges against the unnamed owner of the items, for violation of Republic Act 4653 that prohibits the commercial importation of used clothing and rags to safeguard the health of the people and maintain the dignity of the nation.*