Customs destroys items

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PAPUA New Guinea Customs destroyed illicit cigarettes, tobacco products, alcohol and jewellery worth more than K30 million in duties and taxes recently.
Customs said the illicit items were seized from six containers between 2018 and 2020.
The destruction exercise was carried out just outside Port Moresby in the presence of Customs enforcement officers, police and National Capital District Commission’s food sanitation officers.
Customs said the illicit goods had become unfit for human consumption.
The containers were seized from eight importers for various breaches of the Customs Act relating to smuggling, tax evasion offences and intellectual property rights infringements.
Customs Chief Commissioner David Towe said the contents of the six containers included 6,200 cartons of assorted illicit cigarettes and tobacco products, 5,400 assorted cartons of alcohol products and some jewellery.
Towe said Customs had recently increased its law enforcement approaches against transnational criminals and illicit trade activities.
“Various enforcement and compliance strategies were initiated targeted at trends and techniques employed by noncompliant traders, especially those involved in tax evasion through import, manufacturing and distribution of highly dutiable and excisable products such as cigarettes, tobacco and alcohol products,” he added. The amendments to the Customs Act 1951 (amended) by Parliament last November had significantly increased penalties and fines on infringements of various Customs laws.