Hong Kong Customs seizes suspected illicit cigarettes and illicit heat-not-burn products (with photo)

14 Jan 2021

Hong Kong Customs yesterday (January 13) seized about 520 000 suspected illicit cigarettes and 3 400 suspected illicit heat-not-burn (HNB) products with an estimated market value of about $1.4 million and a duty potential of about $1 million in Yuen Long.

During an anti-illicit cigarette operation conducted in Yuen Long yesterday evening, Customs officers seized the batch of suspected illicit cigarettes and illicit HNB products from a metal hut. A 27-year-old man suspected to be in connection with the case was arrested.

Customs believes that a suspected illicit cigarette storehouse was raided during the operation. Investigation is ongoing.

Under the Dutiable Commodities Ordinance (DCO), tobacco products are dutiable goods to which the DCO applies. All HNB products containing tobacco in content are also dutiable goods subject to the control of the DCO. Any person who imports, possesses, sells or buys dutiable commodities without a valid licence 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/Thursday, January 14, 2021

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