A total of 6,119 sachets of chewing tobacco were found hidden inside tyres of a Malaysia-registered lorry at Tuas Checkpoints on Friday (17 July).
In a Facebook post on Monday, the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) wrote that its officers had noticed anomalies while examining scanned images of the lorry’s spare tyres. Physical checks on the tires uncovered the chewing tobacco hidden inside them.
The case was referred to the Health Sciences Authority (HSA).
“This method of concealment is a cause for concern as similar methods may be used by people with ill intent to smuggle security items into Singapore”, the authority wrote, adding that it will continue to conduct security checks on passengers, goods, and vehicles to safeguard Singapore’s security.
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.