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

9 Jul 2020

Hong Kong Customs today (July 9) seized about 10 million suspected illicit cigarettes with an estimated market value of about $27 million and a duty potential of about $19 million at the Kwai Chung Customhouse Cargo Examination Compound.

Through risk assessment, Customs officers today selected for inspection a seaborne transshipment container, declared as carrying karaoke players, arriving from Singapore and heading for the Philippines via Hong Kong. Upon inspection, Customs officers found the batch of suspected illicit cigarettes inside 1,003 cartons in the container.

After follow-up investigation, Customs officers arrested a 38-year-old man-in-charge of a logistics company suspected to be in connection with the case.

Investigation is ongoing.

Customs will continue its risk assessment and intelligence analysis for interception at source to combat illicit cigarette activities.

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 illicit cigarette activities to Customs' 24-hour hotline 2545 6182 or its dedicated crime-reporting email account (crimereport@customs.gov.hk).

Ends/Thursday, July 9, 2020

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