Hong Kong Customs today (March 5) cracked an illicit cigarette distribution case in Hung Hom. A total of two million sticks of illicit cigarettes packed in 166 carton boxes were seized. The total value of the illicit cigarettes was about $5 million with a duty potential of $3.4 million. In the operation, four men, aged between 20 and 49, were arrested and two vehicles used for conveying the illicit cigarettes were also seized.
At about 1pm today, while conducting an anti-illicit cigarette operation in Hung Hom, Customs officers found two lorries handling goods at a remote area in Hung Hom. A total of 166 carton boxes of illicit cigarettes were found on board the two vehicles. The officers then arrested the two drivers and another two men involved at scene.
A Customs spokesperson said that the department will continue to take stringent enforcement against illicit cigarette activities to protect government revenue.
Under the Dutiable Commodities Ordinance, anyone involved in dealing with, possession of, selling and buying illicit cigarettes commits an offence. The maximum penalty on conviction is imprisonment for two years and a fine of $1 million.
Members of the public are urged to report any suspected illicit cigarette activities to the Customs 24-hour hotline 2545 6182.
Ends/Tuesday, March 5 2013