With the government’s thrusts focused on upholding public safety and immigration control, agencies such as the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) are working hard at tracking illegal transactions and entry of not only individuals but also contraband items that could potentially pose a threat to the law and order in the Republic.
As smuggling can be facilitated and may be directly related to syndicates operating in the country, it’s important that any related activities be dealt with accordingly.
ICA Seizes 6,000 Cartons of Contraband Cigarettes Inside Game Machines from Warehouse
In an announcement released by the Immigrations and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) last Wednesday (March 13), ten game machines loaded with a total of 6,000 cartons of duty-unpaid cigarettes have been confiscated, as shared in a report by the Straits Times.
The total duty and goods and services tax evaded for the contraband cigarettes amounted to over SGD 550,000, as per authorities.
The officers conducted checks on a 40-ft container at a warehouse in Tuas Avenue 3 on Monday at around 1.30pm.
Anomalies had been detected in the scanned images of the shipment declared to contain 10 game machines when it was presented for clearance at Pasir Panjang Scanning Station, as reported by ICA officers.
As the officers were conducting checks, they noted that the game machines were locked and proceeded to open one of them for closer inspection.
Upon realizing that the interior of the machines was hollow, they discovered bundles of duty-unpaid cigarettes wrapped in black cloth.
According to the statement by the ICA, the case has already been referred to Singapore Customs for further investigations.
Meanwhile, the ICA pointed out that protecting the country’s borders remains top priority.
Of note, the methods used by the smugglers may be similar to what terrorists do to smuggle arms and explosives to carry out attacks in the Republic.