MANILA — The Bureau of Customs (BOC) official who allegedly failed to tag the shipment of PHP6.25 billion worth of illegal drugs from China as contraband in the BOC’s computerized classification system is now under the custody of the House of Representatives.
Majority Leader Rodolfo Fariñas disclosed this to House reporters on Monday in an ambush interview.
Fariñas said Larribert Hilario, head of the BOC’s risk management office, will be appearing as a “surprise witness” in the House inquiry on the recent entry of a cargo from China containing PHP6.4 billion worth of methamphetamine hydrochloride, otherwise known as shabu.
Hilario was blamed for the BOC blunder and was suspended from office after he failed to input the data in the BOC’s system that the shipment contained illicit drugs, therefore failing to stop the entry of contrabands from abroad.
Fariñas said the Customs official is now “under the protective custody” of House Sergeant-at-Arms Roland Detabali as authorized by Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez.
Yung allegedly na-suspend, nandyan na siya (Hilario). May mga testimony siya na talagang magliliwanag,” Fariñas said.
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.
The consignee of the subject cargo carrying the shabu was identified as EMT Trading.
The House Committee on Dangerous Drugs is scheduled to conduct a probe on the PHP6.4 billion shabu shipment on Tuesday. Filane Mikee Cervantes/PNA-northboundasia.com