Hong Kong Customs joins forces with Police and Lands Department to take possession of suspected illegally modified speedboats and outboard engines (with photos)

6 Oct 2021

​Hong Kong Customs, the Police and the Lands Department (LandsD) have mounted joint operations at various smuggling black spots on Lantau Island since September 30 this year with a view to vigorously combating sea smuggling activities.

Customs and the Police earlier conducted an anti-smuggling operation in the vicinity of Lantau Island and discovered that smugglers have placed some speedboats suspected to be used for smuggling in the remote area of the seashore. It is also suspected that the area is unleased land. Customs therefore carried out a joint enforcement operation with the Police and the LandsD on October 4.

During the operation, the three departments found a total of 39 speedboats suspected to have been illegally modified or constructed, and eight brand new high-power outboard engines on the unleased land near Ngau Au Village, Tung Chung. It is suspected that the unleased land was being unlawfully occupied, in contravention of the Land (Miscellaneous Provisions) Ordinance (Cap. 28).

Staff of the LandsD then posted notices on the speedboats and outboard engines, requiring the unlawful occupation of the unleased land to cease. Since the objects concerned had not been removed before the specified date, the LandsD has removed the concerned speedboats and outboard engines in accordance with the relevant Ordinance.

Customs will probe into whether the batch of speedboats and outboard engines have been involved in sea smuggling activities. The department will also continue to take stringent enforcement action to combat sea smuggling activities.

The relevant joint operations will continue.

Smuggling is a serious offence. Under the Import and Export Ordinance, any person found guilty of importing or exporting unmanifested cargo is liable to a maximum fine of $2 million and imprisonment for seven years.

Members of the public may report any suspected smuggling activities to Customs' 24-hour hotline 2545 6182 or its dedicated crime-reporting email account (crimereport@customs.gov.hk).

Ends/Wednesday, October 6, 2021

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