Smugglers declare illicit beers as smartphone accessories, excavator parts at Sabah port

KOTA KINABALU – Smugglers attempted to disguise contraband beer in the form of household goods, smartphone accessories and spare parts for excavators. They did this at the Sepanggar Port near here.

After scanning the items, the Customs Department uncovered the smuggling, which included unpaid taxes and beer worth RM1.5mil.

Datuk Mohd Nasir Deraman, assistant director general of Sabah Customs, said that the beer arrived in three containers on 24 April from a neighboring country.

He said that after scanning the containers they found 70.407 litres instead of the items listed on the manifest.

The drinks are worth RM 298,442 and the duty unpaid is more than RM 1.2mil. He said that he suspected the smugglers were trying to avoid both taxes and import procedures.

Mohd. Nasir also said that the department had launched an operation, codenamed Ops Tuai, on May 22, to eliminate contraband in eight districts.

In the course of their operation, they confiscated 16,767 litres illicit alcohol drinks and 15,480 cigarettes sticks.

He added that the raiding teams also seized a van, two lorries and a vehicle, which were all used to store and distribute these items.

He added that the total value of all seized items was estimated at RM456,647.

Mohd Nasir called on the public to help the Department combat illegal activities by reporting them to the toll-free number 1-800-88-8855.

He assured that the identities of informants will remain confidential.

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