A total of 5,599 cartons and 9 packets of assorted duty-unpaid cigarettes were discovered hidden in boxes and concealed in the cargo of fibre sponge mattresses at Tuas Checkpoint on 29 August 2019 at about 5.45 am.
Immigration & Checkpoints Authority (ICA) releasing details of the case, stated that its officers, in collaboration with Singapore Customs, had stopped an arriving Malaysia-registered lorry for further checks. During the course of checks, duty-unpaid cigarettes were found and the 30-year-old male Malaysian driver was immediately placed under arrest and the case was handed over to Singapore Customs for further investigation.
The total duty and Goods and Services Tax (GST) evaded amounted to about $540,570 and $39,560 respectively. Investigations are ongoing.
ICA stressed that safeguarding Singapore’s borders remains its top priority. The same methods of concealment used by contraband smugglers may be used by terrorists to smuggle arms and explosives to carry out attacks in Singapore.
The authority also said that it will continue to conduct security checks on passengers, cargos and vehicles at the checkpoints to prevent attempts to smuggle undesirable persons, drugs, weapons, explosives and other contrabands across the borders.