Customs seizes smuggled cigarettes (with photos)

23 Aug 2007

Customs officers of Marine Enforcement Division yesterday (August 22) seized from a departing Mainland fishing vessel, 380,000 sticks of smuggled cigarettes.

The seized cigarettes were worth $570,000, with a duty potential of $305,000.

At 11:15 pm yesterday, Customs officers intercepted a Mainland fishing vessel in the waters off Chai Wan and seized from a concealed compartment the smuggled cigarettes.

Four Mainland men, aged between 27 and 49, were arrested. They included the vessel master and three crewmen.

The arrested persons are under detention and will be charged with offences under Import and Export Ordinance and Dutiable Commodities Ordinance.

Investigation continues.

A spokesman for the Customs and Excise Department today (August 23) said that the Department would continue to take vigorous enforcement against cross-boundary cigarettes smuggling activities.

Under Import and Export Ordinance, smuggling is a serious crime. The maximum penalty is a fine of $2 million and seven years' imprisonment.

Under the Dutiable Commodities Ordinance, the maximum penalty is a fine of $1 million and two years' imprisonment.

Ends/Thursday, August 23, 2007

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