ICA foils 2 attempts to smuggle cigarettes and tobacco by buses

ICA foils 2 attempts to smuggle cigarettes and tobacco by buses
PHOTO: Immigration & Checkpoints Authority

SINGAPORE - The Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) said that officers foiled two separate attempts to smuggle cigarettes and chewing tobacco via buses over the weekend.

At 5am on Saturday (Oct 24), officers found contraband cigarettes in a modified compartment under a Malaysia-registered bus at Tuas checkpoint. Further checks also revealed more contraband cigarette under the passenger seats, modified air-conditioner ducts and baggage compartment.

A total of 2,750 cartons of cigarettes were uncovered.

On Sunday at about 4pm, a check on another Malaysia-registered bus uncovered cigarettes and chewing tobacco, including inside air-conditioning ducts and speakers. Officers found 581 cartons and 6 packets of contraband cigarettes, as well as over 200kg of chewing tobacco.

The duty payable on all the contraband exceeded $355,000, ICA said in a statement on Tuesday.

The 30-year-old male driver in the first case was sentenced to 30 months' jail on Monday. Investigations are ongoing for the second case, said ICA.

ICA pointed out that the method used by the smugglers in these cases may be used by terrorists to smuggle arms and explosives, and said that it will continue to conduct checks on passengers and vehicles at Singapore's checkpoints.

sinsh@sph.com.sg

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