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Smuggling still a problemamid Covid-19 pandemic

17:27 | 19/06/2021

VCN- Although borders of provinces adjacent to Cambodia have been strictly controlled by competent agencies, the smuggling and illegal cross-border transportation of tobacco still takes place.

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Smuggling still hot amid Covid 19 pandemic
Smuggled cigarettes seized by Dong Thap Customs

Arrests made

In the first week of June, Tay Ninh Market Surveillance force seized more than 6,000 packs of smuggled cigarettes. All these cigarettes are derelict goods and are being gathered for consumption.

On June 8, Gia Lai Market Surveillance force seized nearly 1,500 packs of smuggled cigarettes of a woman while waiting for a bus to transport to Kon Tum.

Onthe same day, competent forces of Vinh Long province discovered a truck transporting 1,400 packs of smuggled cigarettes of Hero, Jet and Scottbrands.

The southwestern border area is the main area for cigarette smuggling. Recently, anti-smuggling forces have continuously handledcases of transporting and storing smuggled cigarettes.

OnJune 4, the working team for pandemic prevention and control of Nhon Hung Border Guard Station (An Giang province) arrested two suspects and seized four sacks containing 1,800 packs of smuggled cigarettes.

From September 2020 to the end of March, the Anti-Smuggling team of An Giang province seized 600,000 packs of smuggled cigarettes.

Dong Thap Customs Department handled 50 cases of illegally transporting goods, most of those are smuggled cigarettes. The department has transferred two cases transporting smuggled cigarettes, with a total quantity of 50,000 packs of foreign cigarettes.

In the first five months of the year, competent forces of Long An Province handled 434 cases of illegal cross-border transportation of smuggled goods.

In May, the forces handled52 cases, decreasing by 108 cases compared to the same period of 2020.

Notably, in the first five months of 2021, the competent forces seized 883,002 packs, declining 118,736 packs year-on-year.

Binh Phuoc province is becoming a new hotspot for smuggled cigarettes. Smugglers are increasing their frequency with more sophisticated tricks.

As of June 15, Binh Phuoc Customs Department seized over 15,000 packs of smuggled cigarettes.

Coordinate to prevent smuggling

Although the number of cases of smuggling and illegal cross-border transportation of goods has decreased, the cigarette smugglers tend to operate in a more sophisticated manner.

The local competent forces have strengthened inspection and control for people and vehicles across the border to prevent the Covid-19 pandemic, leading to a significant reduction in the number of violations.

However, due to the price difference between Cambodia and Vietnam, smugglers have transported a small volume of goods across border.

The price difference in cigarettesbetween the two countries is from VND500 to VND1,000/pack and gradually increases when cigarettes are transported inland.

Byland, smugglers have remodeled their motorcycles to hide smuggled goods and travelat high speed, and transport by buses, coaches and trucks inland.

Via waterway, the smugglers have transported goods at night or across areas without control by competent forces to ship goods inland.

The Customs Enforcement Teamunder Binh Phuoc Customs Department said the establishment of checkpoints has caused ashortage of this item in the domestic market, and increased the cigarette price, so smugglers have used many methods to transport them across borders.

They usually drive 10-20 motorbikes to transport cigarettes from Cambodia to inland to gather and contact traders in neighboring provinces to trade goods and then transport them for consumption in other areas

The development of the pandemic in Cambodia is complex. These smugglers maycarry disease from this country. Therefore, it is very necessary to fight, prevent and handle the perpetrators and others, ensuring social order and safety in the area.

At the beginning of June, the Customs Enforcement Team signed two coordination plans to prevent smuggling with agencies of the Border Guard, Market Surveillance and Police of Loc Ninh and Bu Dop Districts.

On June 8, competent forces tackled eight smuggling cases and seized 12,950 packs of smuggled cigarettes.

By Reporters/ Ngoc Loan