• Customs ‘fixer’ to present documentary proof of ‘tara’ system in Senate probe–Lacson

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    A FLY-by-night customs broker will present on Monday documentary evidence that could further support the existence of “tara” (payoff) system involving officials and personnel of Bureau of Customs (BoC), including former commissioner Nicanor Faeldon, Sen. Panfilo Lacson said Sunday.

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    Mark Taguba will face the Senate blue ribbon committee anew when it resumes its investigation on the corruption at the BOC, the subject of Lacson’s recent privilege speech where he named Faeldon as among those receiving payoffs that included the P100-million “welcome gift” when he became commissioner in July 2016.

    Faeldon denied Lacson’s allegations and demanded the senator produce evidence that would prove his claims.

    “Humihingi siya (Faeldon) ng evidence ‘yan ang kanyang maririnig bukas kung pagbigyan si Taguba sa pamamagitan ng aking pagtanong (He is asking for evidence, he will hear it tomorrow though my questing of Taguba, if he will be allowed),” said Lacson in an interview aired over dzBB.

    Lacson said that apart from his testimony, Taguba would also be presenting bank records, text messages and call logs of his transactions with various BOC officials.

    “May masasangkot doon na mga pangalan at abot ito hanggang sa commissioner (There are several names that will be mentioned and it would reach up to the Commissioner), Lacson said, referring to Faeldon.

    Faeldon is detained at the Senate because of his refusal to attend the hearing of the blue ribbon committee chaired by Sen. Richard Gordon.

    Lacson said he was hoping that he would be allowed by Gordon’s committee to present Taguba without distraction or intervention in order for the resource person to clearly share what he knows.

    “Hindi ito ang sinasabing say-so o capriciously sasabihin ni Taguba kundi nababase lahat sa dokumento (this is not mere say-so or capriciously stated by Taguba, but will all be based on documents),” Lacson said. JEFFERSON ANTIPORDA

     

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