A plane believed to be used to bring local tourists and chartered flights to different destinations in the country has been in the custody of the Bureau of Customs (BOC) since March 29 after its owners failed to present a certificate of payment of duties and taxes from the Bureau.
James Layug, head of the BOC’s Special Studies and Project Development Committee (SSPDC), said the aircraft belonged to Skyjet Airlines.
Based on reports, the aircraft owner and operator of Skyjet Airlines, Magnum Air Inc. had already been delisted from the Subic Bay Freeport List of Locators and had ceased operations since 2014.
Customs Commissioner Nicanor Faeldon had ordered an investigation of the aircraft’s activities after reports reached the bureau about the illegal operation.
During an inspection of PADC Hangar III, General Aviation Area at the Domestic Airport in Pasay City, the airline’s property custodian was unable to show proof of payment of duties and taxes and other documents on the acquisition of the aircraft and its operations.
Magnum Air Inc. was given a 15-day period to present the required documents on the plane’s ownership and operations. Failure to do so would result in the issuance of a Warrant of Seizure and Detention (WSD) against the aircraft.
The aircraft is now under the custody of OCOM-SSPDC personnel and Aircraft Operations Division BOC-NAIA.
“Keep working and going after those who violate Customs laws, and secure our borders from any illegal activity,” said Faeldon.
The Commissioner lauded the joint efforts of SSPDC, BOC-NAIA, NAIA Customs Police and Aircraft Operations Division teams involved in the BOC-initiated operation.
“We have to be vigilant as we protect our borders on land, air and sea at all times,” he added.