Latest Stories

Phoenix says oil smuggling case closed; Not so, says BOC


Customs Commissioner Ruffy Biazon. INQUIRER FILE PHOTO

MANILA, Philippines—Phoenix Petroleum Philippines Inc. defended itself from allegations of oil smuggling on Wednesday, saying that the Department of Justice has dismissed smuggling charges filed against the company under the Bureau of Customs’s Run After the Smugglers (RATS) campaign.

However, Customs Commissioner Ruffy Biazon considers the case still open as the BOC is asking the DOJ to reconsider its resolution that dismissed the complaint for insufficient evidence.

In a disclosure to the Philippine Stock Exchange, Phoenix Petroleum said the DOJ declared in its resolution “that there was no unlawful importation and that (the company) has fully paid the duties, taxes and fees on the subject importation.”

In the resolution dated Nov. 16, 2012, the DOJ said that “the subject shipments passed through the customs house according to the standard procedure, where the specified entry form together with other documents required by law and regulations have been filed and accepted.”

In an interview by text message, Biazon said the “BOC filed an MR (motion for reconsideration)” to push the complaint against Phoenix Petroleum.

Biazon was on his way to Panama, on Wednesday, to attend an international convention of customs agencies and also to engage in bilateral talks with some of his counterparts.

In a separate interview, BOC director for legal services Simplicio N. Domingo II explained the pending status of the case.

“Based on experience from the filing of MRs, it does take a long time (for the DOJ to act on such motions),” Domingo said.

According to the BOC’s RATS Group, the complaint against Phoenix Petroleum is built “on the strength of an initial discovery of nine import entries that did not match the volume and value of the load port survey provided by the international surveyor” (under contract with the BOC).

The RATS Group alleged that, based on “subsequent verifications,” Phoenix imported various petroleum products with a combined dutiable value of P5.1 billion but “tainted by…anomalies.”

That RATS Group said such anomalies included having shipments cleared through Customs without any supporting import entry declarations or non-submission of required importation documents such as invoices and bills of lading.

However, the DOJ said the BOC failed to prove its allegations and so it dismissed the complaint.

Follow Us

Follow us on Facebook Follow on Twitter Follow on Twitter

Recent Stories:

Complete stories on our Digital Edition newsstand for tablets, netbooks and mobile phones; 14-issue free trial. About to step out? Get breaking alerts on your mobile.phone. Text ON INQ BREAKING to 4467, for Globe, Smart and Sun subscribers in the Philippines.

Tags: Bureau of Customs , Business , Department of Justice , oil and gas , oil smuggling , petroleum products , Phoenix Petroleum Philippines Inc. , RATS campaign , Ruffy Biazon , Run After the Smugglers

  • Pedro_Gil

    Biazon is totally responsible. Why do you take a job when you know for a fact that you dont know how and incompetent to do it.? unless you have another purpose. Kung ang isang kawani ay isang inutil sa kanyang gawain, ito ay dapat irelieve sa kanyang trabaho ng nag appoint sa malakanyang at pero kung di niya kayang gawin ito, magpanukala na ng batas at ang taong bayan ang gagawa ng direktang solusyon. tama na ang magkukuyakoy ang dumada kelangan na ng aksyon! kung walng mangyayari diyan, lahat na tayo ay mga inutil!!!

  • Josemakabayan

    There it goes kabayans, the reason why sec. Kim Henares of BIR wants to go after the retailers. She can’t go after the big fish because it got a decision from the justice department dismissing the case of smuggling by the BIg Fish. So if the importations are legal, what is there to go after for???? Mukhang nagkabukulan ahhhhhh!!!!!!!

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_JEMNLLYAP5EA7SM3A6QUOGV62Q Chris

    still BOC is incompetent

  • Roland_F

    This system can NEVER be changed. Wake up Pinoys !
    The R of P is owned by 60-70 family clans (depends how you count) — who have set up a democratic facade run from 120+ political dynasties plus show biz and sport personalities.
    So we get the “best congress and senate money can buy” as ‘lawmakers’ … and law they make : to protect themselves and the tycoons from the masa.

    So in a system of endemic corruption, BoC, BIR, PNP, AFP …. have lousy paid staff which try to fill their own pockets on every possible occasion. So in this case here 30,000 truckloads of gasoline can leave the PEZA without BoC “noticing” it, or checking if the 10-wheeler truck have really only 100l diesel on board or 15000l unleaded. Why ? Because they are busy counting the cash stacked envelope during the trucks are leaving the gate.

  • carlcid

    Oil players like Phoenix and Jetty have been smuggling petroleum for the past 5 years. That’s their bread and butter, so to speak. And they have lots of government officials in their pockets, so it’s become a standard practice.

  • http://www.facebook.com/dodzcasera Diosdado Casera

    Biazon is incompetent. Pinoy should consider replacing him with someone who is morally and intellectually competent. Someone who is proactive.

  • superpilipinas

    “Based on experience from the filing of MRs, it does take a long time (for the DOJ to act on such motions),” Domingo said.

    Kalokohan! If recovery of the money amounts to millions or billions of pesos, Biazon could have gone to De Lima directly and ask for top priority…… Unless of course Biazon has different motives, whatever it is, or just plain incompetence.

    “BoC failed to prove its allegations”…..means BoC is undeniably incompetent!

    So why should we even vote for Team PNoy if incompetence and perhaps, corruption, is a fact in tne current administration!


    DO NOT VOTE FOR Team PNoy, UNA, LP, NP, NPC, Lakas, Kampi, etc.

    • Tyril

      don’t make conclusions based on a few facts and don’t be shallow minded. There are many sides of the story. Fuel smuggling is as difficult to deal with as the Drug Cartels in South America. This is a system where many powerful people are involved. This is not a simple matter of conscience anymore, it is an evil system that benefit the oil companies that smuggle.

    • Yxon

      super, hindi yan incompetence, kulang lang sa pansin (bayad)

Copyright © 2014, .
To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.
Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:
c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94


  • UN heads say Syria aid needs ‘largely unanswered’
  • Captain who left doomed ferry had 40 years at sea
  • UK woman held for murder after children’s bodies found
  • Washington calls S. Sudan violence an ‘abomination’
  • Abducted soldier freed in Compostela Valley
  • Sports

  • UP nips St. Benilde; Adamson blasts RTU in Filoil women’s caging
  • Kevin Garnett responds to Raptors’ GM F word
  • Albert Pujols hits 500th HR of major league career
  • UST posts twin kill in Filoil pre-season cup opening day
  • Wizards beat Bulls in OT to take 2-0 series lead
  • Lifestyle

  • Entering the monkhood a rite of passage
  • Haneda International Airport: A destination on its own
  • Wanted: Beauty queen with a heart that beats for the environment
  • Kim Atienza: At home with art and design
  • Life lessons I want to teach my son
  • Entertainment

  • Ex-Fox exec denies allegations in sex abuse suit
  • Kris Aquino backtracks, says Herbert Bautista and her are ‘best friends’
  • Summer preview: Chris Pratt enters a new ‘Galaxy’
  • Bon Jovi helps open low-income housing in US
  • Summer movie preview: Bay reboots ‘Transformers’
  • Business

  • Toyota sells 2.58 million vehicles, outselling GM
  • McDonald’s 1Q profit slips as US sales decline
  • SEC approves SM’s P15B retail bond offer
  • $103M Vista Land bonds tendered for redemption
  • Oil slips to $102 as US crude supplies seen rising
  • Technology

  • Engineers create a world of difference
  • Bam Aquino becomes Master Splinter’s son after Wiki hack
  • Mark Caguioa lambasts Ginebra teammates on Twitter
  • Brazil passes trailblazing Internet privacy law
  • New York police Twitter campaign backfires badly
  • Opinion

  • One-dimensional diplomacy: A cost-benefit analysis of Manila’s security deal with Washington
  • No ordinary illness
  • Reforest mountains with fire trees and their kind
  • Day of the Earth
  • When will Chinese firm deliver new coaches?
  • Global Nation

  • Hong Kong accepts PH apology; sanctions also lifted
  • China won’t budge, wants PH gov’t to apologize to HK
  • Cha cha train to follow Obama visit?
  • No word yet on inking of US-PH defense pact during Obama visit
  • Filipina, 51, shot dead by 24-year-old American boyfriend
  • Marketplace