Crime doesn’t pay, and it’s especially true in the Philippines where the government takes a proactive stance on curbing smuggled cars. At this point, Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte’s actions are almost ritualistic in his attempted crackdown on crime and government corruption. Illegally imported vehicles are again in the crosshairs of Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte. The President, who ran a campaign to fight corruption and drugs before elected in 2016, took a ringside seat to some luxurious destruction recently when 68 illegally imported cars were destroyed, according to DailyMail.co.uk.
The cars, which included Lamborghinis, Mustangs, Porsches, and eight motorcycles, were valued at more than $5.89 million at current exchange rates. President Duterte watched sitting in safety glasses and a white construction hat.
“I did this because you have to show to the world that you have a viable place of investment and business,” Duterte said before the cars were destroyed, according to the publication. “And the only way to show it is that you are productive and that you have the economy, to absorb the productivity of the population.”
Destroying illegally imported cars is Duterte’s thing. Earlier this year, he ordered the destruction of dozens of unlawfully imported vehicles of all kinds, which included Jaguars, BMWs, and a Chevy Corvette Stingray. According to Duterte’s administration, the Philippines Bureau of Customs seized $2.76 million worth of smuggled cars.
Duterte, who is two years into a six-year presidential term, changed government policy regarding illegally imported cars. Before his appointment, the government would sell the illegally imported vehicles for profit. That doesn’t sit with Duterte’s policies of fighting crime and corruption. He’s made it quite clear he does not want his government profiting from crime.
Honestly, an auction is far less thrilling than watching bulldozers smash a line of cars like wannabe monster trucks. Duterte’s policies are controversial, especially with his fight against drugs where thousands of suspected drugs dealers have been killed by the government raising questions about human rights violations. Smuggling a car into the Philippines won’t get you killed. But it will get it destroyed.