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Singapore : Singapore Customs arrests four men and seizes 1,390 cartons of duty-unpaid cigarettes.

Singapore Customs arrested four men and seized 1,390 cartons of duty-unpaid cigarettes during an operation in an industrial building in Tuas Bay Close on 27 August 2019. During the operation, Singapore Customs officers noticed a Malaysia-registered tipper truck parked in a warehouse unit, which was suspected to be used to convey dutyunpaid cigarettes. Officers moved in to check the tipper truck and warehouse unit. Officers uncovered and seized 768 cartons of duty-unpaid cigarettes concealed in the hidden compartments under the cargo floorboard of the tipper truck and 622 cartons of duty-unpaid cigarettes in the warehouse unit.

The 37-year-old Malaysian tipper truck driver was arrested. Three Singaporean men, aged between 41 and 67, were also arrested in connection with the duty-unpaid cigarettes on the same day. A total of 1,390 cartons of duty-unpaid cigarettes were seized. The duty and Goods and Services Tax (GST) evaded amounted to about $118,700 and $8,750 respectively. The tipper truck and cash amounting to SGD$13,952.50, RM$1,935, USD$100 and BND$100 were also seized. The Malaysian man and one of the arrested Singaporean men were charged in court on 29 Aug 2019 while investigations are ongoing for the remaining two Singaporean men.

Buying, selling, conveying, delivering, storing, keeping, having in possession or dealing with duty-unpaid goods are serious offences under the Customs Act and the GST Act. Offenders can be fined up to 40 times the amount of duty and GST evaded and/or jailed for up to six years. Vehicles used in the commission of such offences and proceeds of sales of duty-unpaid cigarettes are also liable to be forfeited.

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Publication:Mena Report
Geographic Code:9SING
Date:Sep 4, 2019
Words:287
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