OMB, City Hall seize 300T pirated DVDs PDF Print E-mail
Saturday, 19 March 2011 16:37

Personnel from the Optical Media Board-Manila in cooperation with the City Administrator’s Office and the City Hall Community Police Action Center (COMPAC) swooped on video rental stalls and sidewalks downtown and seized hordes of pirated DVDs and pornographic materials estimated to cost millions of pesos. 

Acting on a request of Mayor Celso Lobregat, OMB Chair and Chief Executive Officer Ronald Rickets yesterday sent a 10-man team to Zamboanga to immediately conduct the operation.

Mayor Lobregat wrote Rickets on February 8, 2011 transmitting City Council Resolution 70 authored by Councilor Percival Ramos for information and appropriate action. The resolution calls on the OMB, the police and other concerned agencies to operate against the blatant display of pornographic materials in some downtown stalls.

The OMB team arrived in Zamboanga yesterday morning and paid a courtesy visit on Mayor Lobregat in City Hall to inform about their purpose in coming over and to seek the city’s assistance in the conduct of the anti-piracy operation.  Councilor Ramos was also present during the meeting in City Hall.

Initial inventory by the OMB and the City Administrator’s Office show that more or less 300, 000 pieces of pirated DVDs including pornographic materials were confiscated from various video stalls downtown specifically along Gov. Lim Avenue and Lim Town building.

At the lowest, the pirated DVDs are being sold between P30-50 each while the better ones are sold between P60-80 each, according to Assistant City Administrator Elmeir Apolinario.

Unless deputized by the OMB, the City Administrator’s Office and other agencies concerned has no authority to swoop down on licensed stalls to confiscate illegal materials. The operations held prior to yesterday’s OMB-led raid, were concentrated on unlicensed or illegally-operating business establishments or stalls, Apolinario said.

Aside from his letter to Rickets, Mayor Lobregat also forwarded the Ramos-sponsored resolution to Ciy Police OIC director P/SSupt. Edwin de Ocampo, also for appropriate action.

The OMB team yesterday turned over the seized DVDs to Mayor Lobregat for proper inventory and later appropriate action.

Councilor Ramos said he was prompted to sponsor the resolution based on complaints from the religious sector and public concerning the gross display of pornographic materials in video stalls and sidewalks. He  lamented that many video rental stores and even sidewalk stalls rampantly display their wares by the roadsides exposing minors to pornographic materials. --Sheila Covarrubias