Singapore: Woman arrested at Changi Airport for evading GST on handbags, accessories worth S$11,000

singapore customs
Singapore Customs

A 25-year-old Singapore woman was arrested at Changi Airport for failing to declare the branded handbags and accessories she had purchased overseas for Goods and Services Tax (GST) payment.

The woman, who had arrived on a flight from Paris on January 12, had her luggage checked when she attempted to exit through the Customs Green Channel without declaring the handbags and accessories for GST payment, Singapore Customs said in a Facebook post on Tuesday.

She was carrying goods worth more than S$11,000, the post said.

Singapore Customs said investigations are ongoing.

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All goods brought into Singapore – including new items, souvenirs, gifts or food products – are subject to 7 percent GST, according to the customs website.

However, for travellers who spent less than 48 hours abroad, the value of goods granted for GST relief is S$150 compared to S$600 for those spending 48 hours or more in a foreign country.

GST is levied on the value of the goods, which may include the cost, insurance and freight plus other chargeable costs and the duty payable.

Under the Customs Act, any person found guilty of fraudulent evasion of GST will be liable to a fine up to 20 times the amount of tax evaded and/or be jailed for up to two years.

This article was first published on January 17, 2018