THE Penang Customs Department seized 10.2 million sticks of smuggled cigarettes with a total value of RM7.4 million, including unpaid duty, during a raid in Port Klang, Selangor on August 1.
Penang Customs director Abdul Halim Ramli said acting on information from the public and surveillance carried out by the Special Investigation Unit and the Penang Customs Enforcement unit, a container was seized in Port Klang at 1.10pm on August 1.
“The container was later taken to the enforcement division for further investigations. After a detailed Inspection of the container, 10.2 million of cigarette sticks were found.
“Unpaid duty for the cigarettes worth RM816,800 is RM6.54 million. The total value is therefore RM7.4 million,” said Halim when met by reporters at the Customs Enforcement Store in Bagan Jermal today.,
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Initial investigations revealed that the entry of the container was handled by a shipping company with a branch in Port Klang and based in Kuala Lumpur.
Halim said based on the documents obtained, the cigarettes were brought in from a country in central Asia. Investigations are being carried out to determine the suspects involved in the attempted smuggling.
The company’s modus operandi was to declare the goods in the container as canned mushrooms. A check at the Registrar of Companies revealed that the company’s nature of business and business address were false.
“There are no arrests as yet because the documents were only from the shipping agent. However, we are confident of detaining suspects involved in smuggling the cigarettes,” he said.
The case is being investigated under sections 135(1)(e) and 135(1)(g) of the Customs Act 1967 and section 74(1) (e) of the Excise Act 1976. – Bernama, August 10, 2022.