More than S$200,000 worth of chewing tobacco was seized by the Health Sciences Authority (HSA) in an ambush of a storage facility in Woodlands on 19 February.
In a statement earlier today (27 February), the authority noted that the seizure of 118,000 sachets of chewing tobacco was its largest since HSA was formed in 2001.
HSA said that a truck was first observed entering the premises before a man was spotted pushing a trolley carrying wrapped bundles out of the facility. The man was arrested, though no further details were given about him. The bundles – seized from the facility and the truck – was found to contain sachets of Khaini and Gutkha chewing tobacco.
According to HSA, preliminary investigations revealed that the chewing tobacco was meant to supply the Little India and Tuas areas.
Peddler arrested for selling vape on WeChat
Another operation on the same day also led HSA to arrest a 46-year-old Singaporean who was peddling e-vaporisers and vape accessories on WeChat. The authorities later found prohibited items worth about S$50,000 including more than 3,600 e-vaporisers and accessories in his home and vehicle.
It is believed that the man bought the items from overseas. HSA says that the man’s illicit business came to light via the authority’s online surveillance. The man is assisting HSA in its investigations.
The Tobacco (Control of Advertisements and Sale) Act prohibits the import, distribution, possession for sale, sale or offer for sale of emerging tobacco products including chewing tobacco and e-vaporisers, HSA noted.
If convicted, offenders can face a maximum fine of S$10,000, imprisonment of up to six months, or both for the first offence. For the second and subsequent offences, the penalties include a maximum fine of S$20,000, imprisonment of up to 12 months, or both.
Not forgetting, the purchase, possession, and use of such products are also prohibited in Singapore. Anyone convicted is liable to a fine of up to S$2,000.