THE Bureau of Customs (BoC) said it seized P42.5 billion worth of illicit goods in the year to date ending Dec. 1.

According to preliminary data, the BoC showed that counterfeit goods made up the bulk of seizures at P24.36 billion, followed by illegal drugs (P7.58 billion), smuggled agricultural products (P3.78 billion), and cigarettes and tobacco (P3.77 billion).

The seized items also include general merchandise (P964.1 million), fuel and oil (P716.4 million), steel products (P585.2 million), used clothing (P351 million), and vehicles and accessories (P264.1 million).

Customs Commissioner Bienvenido Y. Rubio said the smuggled goods seized during the period doubled from a year earlier.

Seized items are typically disposed of through auction, condemnation, or donation.

In the 11 months to November, the BoC collected P813.651 billion, or about 93% of its full-year target. Collections were 2.2% higher than the P795.966-billion target for the period and up 3.09% from a year earlier. — Luisa Maria Jacinta C. Jocson