Singapore: ICA seizes more than 1,000 cartons of duty-unpaid cigarettes at Tuas Checkpoint

Duty-unpaid cigarettes concealed in the modified floorboard ICA

Singapore's Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) said on Friday that more than 1,000 cartons of contraband cigarettes were seized from an arriving Singapore-registered tour bus at Tuas Checkpoint earlier this week.

ICA said in a press release that on Wednesday, the officers found 1,057 cartons and 10 packets of duty-unpaid cigarettes hidden in modified compartments behind the driver's seat, floorboard and undercarriage of the bus.

The authorities have handed over the 57-year-old Singaporean driver to Singapore Customs along with the cigarettes and the bus for further investigation.

Duty-unpaid cigarettes detected behind the driver’s seat ICA

According to ICA, the duty and goods and services tax of the contraband cigarettes amounted to about S$82,100 and S$6,040 respectively.

"Our borders are our first line of defence in safeguarding Singapore's security. The security checks are critical to our nation's security," the authorities said in the statement.

Duty-unpaid cigarettes concealed in the modified undercarriage compartment ICA

The press release added that ICA will continue to conduct security checks on passengers and vehicles at the checkpoints to prevent attempts to smuggle in undesirable persons, drugs, weapons, explosives and other contrabands. The same methods of concealment used by contraband smugglers may be used by terrorists to smuggle arms and explosives to carry out attacks in Singapore.

This article was first published on February 9, 2018