Press Release
July 30, 2018

Sen. JV calling on the BOC and the DA to put behind bars agricultural smugglers

I am renewing my call on the Bureau of Customs and the Department of Agriculture to join forces against the smuggling of agricultural products and put behind bars the smugglers and their protectors in the government.

I think we need to send a strong signal to the smugglers that we are not soft on them and we are determined to haul them off to jail because under Republic Act 1085, or the anti-agricultural smuggling law in which I am one of the principal authors, large-scale agricultural smuggling is declared as an economic sabotage with a maximum penalty of life imprisonment.

Itong mga smuggler na ito ay hindi natatakot dahil wala naman silang nakikitang nakukulong. I myself is puzzled why until now, or two years after the enactment of the measure, not a single agricultural smuggler is in prison. Hindi ko alam, baka mayroon na pero hindi ko lang nabalitaan.

While we are tightening our ports to prevent the entry of smuggled products, we also need to clamp down on smugglers by arresting them, prosecuting them, and putting them inside prison cells.

This is even more urgent now as we expect a massive smuggling of agricultural products because of the unabated spike of prices of prime household commodities.

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