Fewer immigration offenders caught but contraband cases up, reports ICA

Fewer immigration offenders caught but contraband cases up, reports ICA
ICA said some smugglers have reverted to known methods of concealment, like stuffing contraband in hollow plywood doors and compressed natural gas tanks of cars.

SINGAPORE - Fewer immigration offenders (IOs) were caught in the first half of this year, compared to the same period last year, according to data in the Immigration and Checkpoint Authority's (ICA's) mid-year report. But the number of contraband smuggling cases rose slightly.

The total number of immigration offenders arrested in the first half of the year was 1,020, a 22 per cent fall from the 1,311 arrested in the same period last year.

The number of IO harbourers and employers arrested fell by 2 per cent and 27 per cent respectively, with 109 harbourers and 40 employers caught.

The number of contraband smuggling cases detected in the period was 47,800. This is a 3 per cent increase from last year's 46,300 cases. Some common contraband detected by ICA officers include bullet-proof vests, throwing knives, pepper sprays and night vision binoculars.

ICA said that animals such as birds and puppies were also detected.

The report also mentioned that some smugglers have reverted to known methods of concealment, like stuffing contraband under modified floorboards in vans, hollow plywood doors, and in compressed natural gas tanks of cars.

sinsh@sph.com.sg

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