Thousands of jobs and unsuspecting consumers may have been saved from the ill effects of piracy and smuggling by the Bureau of Customs’ (BOC) condemnation of P300-million worth of seized smuggled fake high-end brands like Louis Vuitton, Channel, Gucci, La Coste, Breitling, Ballenciaga, and Hermes among other famous brands.
In the biggest condemnation of seized fake goods for the year at the BOC recently, Customs Commissioner Ruffy Biazon said that, the counterfeit goods were seized by BOC-Intellectual Property Rights Division (IPRD) operatives under lawyer Zsae Carrie de Guzman, an operating unit of the BOC–Intelligence Group (IG) under Deputy Commissioner Danilo Lim, after conducting a visit on a warehouse at the Aclem Building in Binondo, Manila.
“We hope this exercise today will sending a clear message to traders that the BOC will not allow smuggling to flourish, especially on items that will have tremendous impact on Philippine labor,” Biazon said.
“Moreover, we will not allow the Philippines to be a dumping ground of counterfeit goods, if only to enhance the country’s competitiveness as an investor friendly nation. The BOC, on this aspect, will ensure that the interests of foreign investors like distributors of authentic high-end brands are protected,” he added.
For his part, Lim said that the P300 million seizures of fake goods were the result of a series of raids by BOC-IPRD operatives over the last three weeks.
The raids, according to Lim also coincided with the Interpol’s Operation Hurricane, the international police’s drive against illicit goods and CIIS operatives under Director Fernandino Tuazon.