Zambo cops, troops seize P4.7-M smuggled cigarettes

ZAMBOANGA CITY – Military and police seized some PHP4.7 million worth of smuggled cigarettes in this city and in the province of Zamboanga del Sur, the region's top cop said on Saturday.

Brig. Gen. Ronaldo Genaro Ylagan, Police Regional Office-9 (PRO-9) director, said the bulk of the smuggled cigarettes was seized around 6:40 p.m. Friday in Sitio Malasugat, Barangay Sangali.

Ylagan said troops of the 74th Infantry Battalion were manning a checkpoint when they flagged down a cargo truck driven by Jay Villarosa, 43, who was traveling with a companion, Abby Jadjail, 31.

The truck, when inspected, was found to be loaded with 100 master cases of smuggled cigarettes worth PHP4.3 million covered by an empty styrofoam cooler.

The confiscated smuggled cigarettes were placed under the custody of the Zamboanga City Police Office’s Station 3 for eventual turnover to the Bureau of Customs.

Ylagan said the other smuggled cigarettes were seized around 1 a.m. Saturday in Barangay Baloyboan, Pagadian City.

He said the policemen were conducting checkpoint operations when they intercepted a four-wheel vehicle driven by Hermie Ibañez, 34, of Zone 1, Barangay Culianan.

He said Ibañez’s vehicle was loaded with 751 reams of undocumented cigarettes consisting of 502 reams of Fort and 249 Famous cigarettes worth PHP450,600.

The suspect, his vehicle, and the confiscated cigarettes were brought to Pagadian City Police Station. (PNA)


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