Philippines Reviews Customs Procedures in Wake of Leland Yee Indictment

Philippines Bureau of Customs (BOC) Chief John Philip Sevilla has ordered a thorough review of existing procedures on exportation following news that California State Senator Leland Yee (D-San Francisco) had managed to smuggle firearms from the Philippines to the United States.

Yee was arrested by the FBI on charges of corruption and alleged conspiracy to smuggle and trade firearms for cash. The FBI claimed that Yee was in touch with Wilson Lim, a dentist who was once living in the southern province of Mindanao but now living in California. Lim allegedly had contacts in the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) for the high-powered firearms that would be smuggled into the US.

At a recent press conference, Sevilla said his agency has checked ports in Mindanao and Cagayan De Oro but could not find any indication of exported firearms.

"We are now checking the existing procedures regardless of what port to make sure that this will not happen again," Sevilla said. He acknowledged that their current focus is the importation of goods – at least until Yee's arrest and indictment became public knowledge.

Sevilla added that – so far – they could not find any evidence of illegal activities involving Yee or his associates in the country.

Source: Global Nation

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