Over 700 cartons of cigarettes seized

The duty-unpaid cigarettes were hidden in bumpers (above), door panels (right), spare tyre compartments, fuel tanks, back seats, boot panels and floorboards.
The duty-unpaid cigarettes were hidden in bumpers (above), door panels (right), spare tyre compartments, fuel tanks, back seats, boot panels and floorboards.PHOTO: IMMIGRATION & CHECKPOINTS AUTHORITY/FACEBOOK
The duty-unpaid cigarettes were hidden in bumpers (above), door panels (right), spare tyre compartments, fuel tanks, back seats, boot panels and floorboards.
The duty-unpaid cigarettes were hidden in bumpers (above), door panels (right), spare tyre compartments, fuel tanks, back seats, boot panels and floorboards.PHOTO: IMMIGRATION & CHECKPOINTS AUTHORITY/FACEBOOK

More than 700 cartons of contraband cigarettes were seized by Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) officers at Woodlands Checkpoint between Feb 28 and Wednesday.

In a Facebook post yesterday, ICA said that 707 cartons and 1,187 packets of assorted duty-unpaid cigarettes were seized in five separate incidents over the week.

The cigarettes were found in two Singapore-registered and three Malaysia-registered cars, and were hidden in spare tyre compartments, door panels, fuel tanks, bumpers, back seats, boot panels and floorboards.

Two Singaporean men, two Singaporean women and three Malaysian men were handed over to Singapore Customs, which is conducting further investigations. The five vehicles involved in the cases are likely to be forfeited, ICA said.

The authority added in its post that the methods of concealing the duty-unpaid cigarettes are cause for concern as they may be used by others with ill intent to smuggle items into Singapore.

"The ICA will continue to conduct security checks to prevent smuggling attempts," the authority said.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 09, 2019, with the headline 'Over 700 cartons of cigarettes seized'. Print Edition | Subscribe