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Great Success of Tobacco Sniffer Dogs ─ Kaohsiung Customs Seizes Cigarettes Valued at NT$12 Million

Kaohsiung Customs cracked down on cigarettes smuggling with a value over NT$10 million from a transhipment container. Because of the upcoming Chinese Ghost Festival and Moon Festival, there is a huge need for cigarettes and mushrooms. Since the government raised the health and welfare surcharge on tobacco products, it makes smuggling cigarettes the most profitable which creates great incentives for smugglers. Director of Kaohsiung Customs, Hsieh Lien-Chi (謝連吉), commanded Customs officers to reinforce the inspection of cargo transhipment, especially for those from Philippines, the high risk area. After a long period of time for tracking down and selection of the manifest, on July 27, 2015, the designated inspection officers at Cijin Branch of Kaohsiung Customs spotted a suspicious transhipment container (TGHU1758970), shipped by XIN MING ZHOU 18, switching storage to Wharf NO. 108 right after unloading at Wharf NO. 118. The inspection officers examined the container and found a cargo full of smuggled foreign Maple Brand cigarettes. The seizure was 450 boxes, 225,000 packs, with a market value around NT$12 million causing NT$8.1 million tax evasion.
Kaohsiung Customs explained that officers, along with tobacco sniffer dogs, inspected this transhipment container right after escorting it to Customs control area on the same day around 9 pm. Before opening the cargo, tobacco sniffer dogs showed positive reaction as they sat down. It was found out that this container was full of smuggled foreign Maple Brand cigarettes with warnings reminding from Ministry of Health and Welfare on each pack. Customs Manifest and Bill of lading provided by the shipping company made a false declaration as FOOTWEAR. To prevent an amalgamation of tobacco and drug stuffed back into cigarette shells, officers deployed not only X-ray scanning machines but also tobacco sniffer dogs. Fortunately, there shows no indication of concealed drugs. Making a false declaration and submitting no transport documents violated not only Customs Anti-smuggling Act but Tobacco and Alcohol Administration Act and the violations shall have the entire cargo to be seized.
Kaohsiung Customs added that the incentives for smuggling tobaccos sharply increase after raising the health and welfare surcharge on tobacco products to NT$20 since June 1, 2009. To prevent any illicit smuggling, Customs set up many stages for anti-smuggling operation. Beside enhancing the anti-smuggling defenses, the tobacco sniffer dog brigade was established recently to assist the anti-smuggling operation. Performance of tobacco sniffer dogs in this case really inspires and boosts Customs' confidence.

News contact Ms. Tsai
Tel:07-5628219
Cell phone:0910752371

  • Publish Date:2015-08-11
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