Hong Kong Customs seizes suspected illicit cigarettes worth about $10 million (with photo)

3 Feb 2021

Hong Kong Customs yesterday (February 2) seized about 3.6 million suspected illicit cigarettes with an estimated market value of about $10 million and a duty potential of about $6.9 million in Yuen Long.

During an anti-illicit cigarette operation conducted yesterday evening in San Sang Tsuen, Yuen Long, Customs officers seized the batch of suspected illicit cigarettes from a metal hut and a private car. A 41-year-old man suspected to be in connection with the case was arrested and the private car has been detained. Customs believes that a suspected illicit cigarette storehouse has been raided during the operation.

Investigation is ongoing. Customs will continue to trace the source and the flow of the illicit cigarettes. The likelihood of further arrests is not ruled out.

Customs will continue to enhance enforcement against illicit cigarette activities on all fronts through intelligence analysis. The department will also step up enforcement before the coming Lunar New Year holiday.

Under the Dutiable Commodities Ordinance, anyone involved in dealing with, possession of, selling or buying illicit cigarettes commits an offence. The maximum penalty upon conviction is a fine of $1 million and imprisonment for two years.

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

Ends/Wednesday, February 3, 2021

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