Effectiveness in cooperation for processing criminal cases between Customs and Police

VCN – The People’s Court of Ninh Binh province, on May 21, opened a first-instance trial in a case of smuggling waste and plastic scrap. This is a typical case of cooperation between Customs and Police.
effectiveness in cooperation for processing criminal cases between customs and police
On May 9, 2020, Nam Can International Border Gate Customs Branch (Nghe An Customs Department) cooperated with Ky Son District Police (Nghe An) to successfully close the case of illegal transport of drugs across border, arrested 3 persons, seized 20 kg of meth, 20 bricks of heroin. Photo: TÔ HIẾU

By the end of 2017 and early 2018, violations related to imported scrap imports became a hot issue in the whole country, especially in large seaports such as Hai Phong, HCM City and Ba Ria-Vung Tau. Facing that situation, the General Department of Vietnam Customs cooperated with competent forces, especially the Police, to strengthen investigation and handling.

Based on investigation results, in 2018, the Customs authority prosecuted a case of smuggling involving several businesses, including Duc Dat Import Export Trading Services Co., Ltd. and Truong Thinh Packaging Private Enterprise and at the same time transferring the dossier to the Police for further investigation and handling.

Based on the results of the investigation, also in 2018, the Investigation Agency Police Department of the Ministry of Public Security (C03) prosecuted the case, the accused and detained many related subjects including four of the accused mentioned above.

After completing the investigation, C03 transferred the case dossier to the Supreme People's Procuracy, requesting the prosecution of the violators. On December 17, 2019, the Supreme People's Procuracy issued indictment No. 02/CT-VKSNDTC-V3 prosecuting four accused of "smuggling", including: Nguyen Duc Truong, Director of Duc Dat Import Export Trading Services Co., Ltd. (Ninh Binh); Nguyen Van Son, Director of Truong Thinh Packaging Private Enterprise (Ninh Binh); Duong Van Phuong, staff in charge of import and export division of Truong Thinh company and Pham Quoc Huy, a freelancer who runs an import and export service.

The case’s first-instance trial was held by the People's Court of Ninh Binh province (starting from May 21).

Also related to importing scrap, besides coordination between Customs and Police at the central level, it also noted effective cooperation in some localities, especially Hai Phong. From the results of the investigation and prosecution of Hai Phong Customs, Hai Phong City Police also prosecuted the case, expanding investigation and arrest of related subjects.

Another area of ​​effective cooperation between Customs and Police was related to combating transnational drug crimes.

Regarding struggling and arrest, we highly appreciated the performance of Customs forces in recent times because of the discovery and arrest of Customs authorities related to trans-national drug lines. This was means the Customs authorities have participated in detecting, preventing and detaining drug-related crime lines remotely.

According to Colonel Vu Van Hau - Deputy Director of the Police Department on drug-related criminal investigation (C04) Ministry of Public Security, recent results showed drugs in big cases originated from abroad and were brought into Vietnam. Vietnam has convenient transportation with a full system of seaports, airways, roads, railways and borders with many countries. In particular, it is very close to the major drug centre of the world which is the Golden Triangle area, so Vietnam was a place for transporting drugs into and continue sending to third countries for consumption. In addition, Vietnam is opening for integration with the world, with policies of economic development, facilitating goods circulation and exchange, also opportunities for drug-related criminals to take advantage of. Hence, it was the downside of opening for international integration.

Therefore, remote prevention and reducing pressure on the source of drugs transporting into Vietnam were very important, especially detection and seizure from the border gate. To accomplish this task, the Customs force and the Border Defence force plays an important role.

Besides that, to serve the illegal production and transportation of synthetic drugs, international crime bosses took advantage of preferential policies, attracted investment to set up businesses and produce synthetic drugs from precursors. Therefore, controlling the export and import of precursors from Customs force was very important.

Colonel Vu Van Hau said that with the situation of drug-related crimes, especially transnational drug-related crimes were developed complicatedly, police and customs forces needed to strengthen their ties.

According to the General Department of Vietnam Customs, in 2019, the Customs Enforcement Force worked with the Police to detect 136 cases of smuggling and illegal transport of goods across borders with an estimated value of infringing goods more than VND 3,693 billion, arresting 75 subjects. For drug-related crimes, the two forces cooperated to tackle 61 cases and arrest 46 subjects. Additionally, they also coordinated to handle one case of intellectual property and counterfeit goods.

In 2019, Customs authorities transferred 106 cases to Police for prosecution and received feedback of 39 cases from Police.

Regarding the case chaired by the Police in coordination with Customs Enforcement forces, in 2019, there were 19 cases of smuggling, illegal transport of goods across border, arresting 25 subjects. The total value of infringing goods was estimated at more than VND 658 million; detected 22 drug cases, arrested 16 subjects.

Updated in the first four months of 2020, Customs authorities prosecuted seven criminal cases and transferred 30 cases to the Police agency for requesting to prosecute.

In the context of smuggling and illegal transport of goods across borders becoming more and more sophisticated and complex, the coordination for struggling between Customs authorities and Police agencies and other competent forces such as Border Defence force, Coast Guard and Market Management were very essential to ensure a fair and transparent production and business environment and protect the security and safety of the community.

By Thái Bình/Thanh Thuy

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