JOINT police and Bureau of Customs operatives have seized some P4.8 million worth of smuggled cigarettes and arrested six people in a law enforcement operation off Zamboanga City, a top police official announced Tuesday, November 16.

Police Colonel Rexmel Reyes, Zamboanga City Police Office (ZCPO) director, said the smuggled cigarettes shipment was seized around 7:20 a.m. Monday, November 15, near Manalipa, an island village east of the city.

Reyes the operatives of the 2nd Zamboanga City Mobile Force Company and BOC were conducting seaborne and border control patrol when they spotted a motorboat named "MB-Shilma 02" manned by six-man crew.

Reyes identified the crew as the following: Hasan Sahi, 40; Ged Hanapi, 46; Marcos Aba, 46; Cesar Sahi, 41; Husin Sahi, 35; and Ben Mudjahali Aslim, 53.

The motorboat was loaded with 138 master cases of assorted smuggled cigarettes with an estimated market value of P4,878,300, according to Reyes.

He said the shipment of smuggled cigarettes came from Jolo, Sulu and bound for Zamboanga Sibugay.

He said the seized items, crewmen and motorized boat were turned over to the BOC for proper disposition.

Reyes commended the operating units for the successful anti-smuggling operations as he emphasizes that the ZCPO will continue to strengthen their watch against the entry of smuggled cigarettes in the city in collaboration with other law enforcement agencies. (SunStar Zamboanga)

Source: SunStar (