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More than 5,000 cartons of duty-unpaid cigarettes found in 'vegetable' consignment

More than 5,000 cartons of duty-unpaid cigarettes found in 'vegetable' consignment

The lorry used to smuggle the cigarettes. (Photo: Immigration and Checkpoints Authority)

SINGAPORE: Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) officers on Monday (Feb 17) seized thousands of cartons of duty-unpaid cigarettes declared as vegetables in a lorry.

The total duty and Goods and Services Tax (GST) evaded amounted to about S$445,788 and S$36,094 respectively, said ICA in a news release on Friday.

In the incident, which happened at about 4.40am, officers at Woodlands Checkpoint grew suspicious when they found "anomalies" in the scanned images of a consignment in a Malaysia-registered lorry.

The consignment had been declared as "vegetables" - but when officers carried out further checks, they discovered 5,220 cartons of duty-unpaid cigarettes hidden inside cardboard boxes.

Duty-unpaid cigarettes hidden inside boxes within a "vegetable" consignment. (Photo: Immigration and Checkpoints Authority)
A total of 5,220 cartons of duty-unpaid cigarettes were discovered. (Photo: Immigration and Checkpoints Authority)

"Further checks revealed that the 27-year-old Malaysian driver was in possession of a forged Malaysia driving license," said the authority.

He was immediately arrested and the case was referred to Singapore Customs and the Singapore Police Force for investigations.

Source: CNA/nc(aj)

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