Business Recorder
Plan to smuggle 1200 smartphones thwarted

Plan to smuggle 1200 smartphones thwarted




SOHAIL SARFRAZ

ISLAMABAD: Under the ongoing drive against smugglers, the Directorate General of Intelligence and Investigation (Customs), the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR), has foiled a major attempt at Karachi to smuggle 1200 smartphones (value Rs 48 million) under the garb of import of auto parts.

Sources told Business Recorder here on Sunday that the agency has intensified its efforts against smuggling, under-invoicing, mis-declaration and money laundering across the country. The following ongoing actions against the involved customs officers in different cases, there is fear and unrest among the ‘corrupt’ officers in field formations. However, the agency has committed to continue its momentum against smugglers and any customs officer having connivance with importers indulge in corrupt practices.

In this latest case at Air Freight Unit (AFU), Jinnah International Airport, Karachi, the FIR has been lodged against the importers and two persons have been arrested. There is a strong likelihood that the involved customs officers, who examined and cleared the consignment, would also be arrested in this unique case of actual concealment.

Details of the case revealed that in pursuance of a specific information, the Regional Office (Customs Enforcement), Karachi of the Directorate General intercepted two Suzuki Vans bearing Registration NosKH-9472 and KP-0677, coming out of Air Freight Unit (AFU), Jinnah International Airport, Karachi and carrying goods cleared by AFU, Customs. Goods Declaration (GD) No.KPAF-HC-45603 dated 13.03.2017 produced by the carriers of the goods showed that a consignment of auto parts, imported vide Air Way Bill No.17637737173 from Dubai, by M/s Al-Amna Trading Company, Saddar, Karachi had been cleared by Customs on payment of duty/taxes chargeable on auto parts.

On search, 31 cartons of miscellaneous new auto parts and one carton (bearing No.12) of assorted foreign mobile phones (smart phones) of different brands were found loaded on the vehicles. The vehicles were brought to the office of Directorate General I&I, situated in the PECHS, Block-6, Karachi for thorough examination of the consignment which resulted in recovery of 1200 mobile phones of assorted brands and origins. Value of the recovered mobile phones (smart phones) comes to Rs 48 million (approx)

Clearly, the said quantity of smart phones had been concealed in the imported consignment of auto parts and cleared clandestinely under the garb of auto parts. Since the smart phones had been brought into the country in contravention of the import restrictions imposed through Import Policy Order, 2016, it is apparent that the offence of smuggling has been committed.

Further Investigation in the matter is under progress. The role other association-in-crime will be ascertained during the investigation, sources added.



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