Three arrested for importing fake goods

Suspected counterfeit earphones with an estimated street value of $800 were seized at Tuas Checkpoint on Jan 3. On the same day, officers confiscated bags and purses, also suspected of being fake, at Woodlands Checkpoint.
Suspected counterfeit earphones with an estimated street value of $800 were seized at Tuas Checkpoint on Jan 3. On the same day, officers confiscated bags and purses, also suspected of being fake, at Woodlands Checkpoint.PHOTOS: ICA

Malaysian man nabbed at Tuas Checkpoint, Singaporean man and woman at Woodlands

Three people were arrested after they attempted to import counterfeit items at Tuas and Woodlands checkpoints on Jan 3, the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) and Singapore Police Force said in a joint statement yesterday.

In the first of two cases, ICA officers at Tuas Checkpoint directed an arriving Malaysian-registered car for further checks at about 10am.

The car was driven by a 33-year-old Malaysian man, and there were two other passengers. During the check, the man told the officers that he had to pay goods and services tax for his earphones, speakers and headsets of assorted brands.

At the tax payment office, a Singapore Customs officer noticed that the declared values for the items, ranging from RM3 (S$1) to RM18, were too low.

The case was referred to the police for investigation on suspicion that the man could be importing counterfeit items for commercial purposes. He was subsequently arrested for offences under the Trade Marks Act.

More than 70 suspected counterfeit items with an estimated street value of $800 were seized by the police.

The second case occurred at about 6.50pm at the Woodlands Checkpoint. A checkpoint officer directed an arriving Malaysian-registered car, with six people in it, for further checks.

ICA said it 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 contraband items.

The officer found several bags in the car boot containing multiple items wrapped in transparent plastic, suspected to be counterfeit goods.

Police later arrested a 62-year-old man and a 60-year-old woman, both Singaporean, for offences under the Trade Marks Act.

A police raid at their home led to the seizure of more than 110 suspected counterfeit items wit an estimated street value of $1,800.

ICA said it 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 contraband items.

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, said ICA.

Those found guilty of importing, possessing or distributing goods with falsely applied trademarks for the purpose of trade can be jailed for up to five years and/or fined up to $100,000.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 18, 2018, with the headline 'Three arrested for importing fake goods'. Print Edition | Subscribe