PAMPANGA, Philippines – Operatives of the government's anti-smuggling Task Force Aguila intercepted 3 used sports cars being brought out of the Clark Freeport Zone without proper customs documents late Tuesday night, July 9.
Task Force Aguila deputy director Arnel Maguillo, who led the operation in cooperation with the Clark Development Corporation public safety department, said in a draft report that 2 Ford Corvette Stingray were found inside a 10-wheeler closed van truck with plate number CAJ 7240, while a Ford Thunderbird was on board a smaller truck with plate number PNJ 609.
The drivers of the two trucks – identified as Marlon Decamon, 42, and Eric Bais, 49 – were placed under the task force’s custody while the seized old sports cars were impounded, along with the trucks used to smuggle them out of this free port.
“All of the 3 confiscated motor vehicles were imported and considered as vintage cars emanating from the Byrnes Motor Restoration Trust located along 7175 Gil Puyat corner Feati Street, Clark Field, Pampanga,” Maguillo stated.
He added that while the used sports cars were being sneaked out at the free port’s gate, the trucks were being “escorted” by sports utility vehicles.
“The said motor vehicles were being ‘escorted’ by about 3 or 4 SUVs...the occupants of which were allegedly claiming to be National Bureau of Investigation agents, this was according to the drivers of the apprehended taxable items, while trying to take exit at the main gate of Clark Freeport Zone sans any appropriate customs duty payment documents,” he said.
Rappler learned that Task Force Aguila confiscated two other old vehicles earlier – a Ford F-150 XLT pick-up truck and a 1970 model Nissan Datsun car – which were allegedly brought to Angeles City and City of San Fernando in this province from Clark Freeport Zone for restoration.
Maguillo said charges for violation of Tariff and Customs Code of the Philippines and pertinent laws would be filed against those found responsible for the alleged smuggling of the used vehicles.
Quoting Task Force Aguila director General Francisco Cruz Jr, Maguillo said it was the marching order of President Rodrigo Duterte to the task force to confiscate all items without appropriate documents and go after the smugglers and their protectors. – Rappler.com