MANILA – The Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA), the Anti-Money Laundering Board (AMLC) and the Customs Office (BOC) on Monday served an order to freeze the bank and credit accounts and assets of two personalities suspected of drugs.
PDEA chief executive Wilkins Villanueva said the order was issued against the bank and credit accounts, insurance policies, real estate and motor vehicles of Julie Hao Gamboa, aka Kimberly, and spouses Ruben and Teresita Taguba.
The order covers 173 bank and credit accounts, insurance policies, 17 properties and five motor vehicles of the suspects. The suspects’ real estate has a conservative market value of at least PHP 70 million.
The 5th chamber of the Court of Appeal (CA) issued a resolution on May 27, 2021, granting the request for the issuance of a freezing order.
Deputy Customs Commissioner for the Intelligence Group Raniel Ramiro said the case was linked to the PHP 1.8 billion worth of shabu seized at the Manila International Container Port (MICP) on March 22, 2019.
Combined officers from the PDEA Intelligence and Investigation Service (IIS), PDEA-National Capital Region Regional Office (RO-NCR) and BOC intercepted a total of 276 kilograms of methamphetamine hydrochloride or shabu , which were concealed in tea bags and came from an expedition. originally from Vietnam.
âOur anti-illegal drug operations have successfully intercepted several high-profile cases recently. We assure the public that we are doing our best to protect our borders and secure the country against the entry of illegal drugs, âRamiro said in a statement.
“Since the office has been the head of the country’s border security, we have worked a lot with the MICP against illegal smuggling in our ports,” he added.
On May 31, 2019, the PDEA filed a criminal complaint with the Department of Justice (DOJ) against Xu Zhi Jian, alias Jacky Co, a Chinese national, and 16 others for importing the shipment of shabu from 1, PHP 8 billion.
The case was also referred by the PDEA and BOC to the AMLC Secretariat for investigation and possible filing of civil confiscation and money laundering cases.
Gamboa was among Jian’s cohorts in the alleged smuggling of 276 kilos of shabu via the MICP in May 2019. She is also believed to be responsible for the illegal release of 105 containers from the port of Manila in 2018.
It does not have a registered business and has a total of 81 accounts in different banks that have processed millions of pesos and also owns three properties and four registered motor vehicles.
On the other hand, Taguba was a former customs police officer and father of Mark Taguba, who is the subject of a separate investigation into the shipment of 602 kilograms of shabu confiscated from a warehouse in the town of Valenzuela in May. 2017.
Former Taguba has 21 properties registered to his name and has carried out hundreds of millions of pesos in banking transactions using 21 different bank accounts. It also maintains a joint account with Gamboa which received 108 transfers of funds amounting to PHP51.1 million from the latter’s personal account.
âThe posting of preservation orders on both properties sends a strong message to potential drug money launderers that despite the challenges posed by the pandemic, the PDEA, AMLC and BOC continue to step up their efforts. against personalities belonging to the upper echelon of the drug trade. “said Villanueva.
“We will work closely together to track drug money, arrest and confiscate the assets of drug money launderers,” he added. (with reports by Ferdinand Patinio /ANP)