Alvarez says creation of BOC command center illegal

MANILA-- House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez on Wednesday said the creation of the Command Center (ComCen) in the Bureau of Customs (BOC) is illegal.

During the House Ways and Means Committee's inquiry on the multi-billion peso shabu (crystal meth) smuggling through the BOC, Alvarez pointed out that Customs Commissioner Nicanor Faeldon has no authority to create such body without any administrative order from the Secretary of Finance.

Oh, bakit ganyan? Kasi hindi ka pupwede gumawa ng kahit anong proseso doon kung walang administrative order coming from the Secretary of Finance. You are not authorized to do it, Alvarez said.

Among the tasks of the ComCen is to issue alert orders that would allow the inspection of suspicious shipments.

Under the BOC's computerized classification system, products imported to the country pass through four lanes, depending on the risk level: super-green, green, yellow, and red.

The shabu shipment consigned to EMT Trading passed through the green lane. Shipments tagged to pass through the green lane of the BOC are not required to undergo X-ray or manual inspection of its contents.

The illegal shipment was discovered on May 30 when members of the BOC and the National Bureau of Investigation personnel raided a warehouse on Aster Street in Paso de Blas, Valenzuela City, based on a tip coming from their Chinese counterparts.

Source: Philippine News Agency