6,500 cartons of contraband cigarettes seized from truck's 40-foot tank

PHOTO: Immigration and Checkpoints Authority

SINGAPORE - Officers from the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) have foiled a man's attempt to smuggle more than 6,000 cartons of contraband cigarettes into Singapore.

In a statement on Friday (June 3), ICA said that they had stopped a Malaysia-registered truck with a 40-foot bitumen bowser and directed it to undergo checks at Tuas checkpoint on Thursday evening.

Officers had noticed anomalies in the scanned image of the truck's tank, which was driven by a lone 37-year-old Malaysian man.

When they opened the bowser's latch, officer's found 6,500 cartons of duty-unpaid cigarettes hidden in a modified compartment at the rear of the tank.

The potential duty and Goods and Services Tax evaded amounted to about $504,400 and $50,778 respectively.

ICA said that the man, cigarettes and truck were all handed over to the Singapore Customs for investigations. The vehicle may also be forfeited.

ICA explained that the same methods of concealment used by contraband smugglers may also be used by terrorists to smuggle arms and explosives into Singapore.

Therefore, the authority stressed that it will continue to conduct security checks on passengers and vehicles at Singapore's checkpoints.

seanyap@sph.com.sg

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