Friday, 24 April 2009 2:03 PM

Harbour Patrol Catches Smugglers

A joint patrol by Solomon Islands law enforcement agencies confiscated hundreds of cigarette cartons worth thousands of dollars from a Taiwanese fishing vessel entering Honiara Harbour.

Customs and Ports officers inspecting the foreign fishing vessel on Monday morning suspected the presence of undeclared goods on board constituting a breach of Customs and Quarantine laws.

On Tuesday, Police Harbor Patrol, Customs, Quarantine and Ports officers intercepted the fishing vessel known as the FFV Fong Seong 666 and seized the undeclared alcohols and cigarettes.

There were more than 142 packets of cigarettes worth $14, 200, 2 cartons of wine worth $135 and 45 bottles of Brandy worth $2,240. Estimated value of the undeclared goods seized was $16,575. The ship's master was also fined $1000 as a Customs penalty for breaching the harbour laws.

"The success of the operation is due to the fact that different agencies successfully collaborated and shared vital information. This seizure demonstrates the need for us to work even more closely in the future," said the Police Maritime Director Inspector Charles Fox.

Mr. Fox praised his officers for successfully carry out the task and urged local people and businesses to work more closely with the Maritime harbour law enforcement agencies to tackle such illegal activities in the Solomon Islands.

Anyone knowing any information about the trade of undeclared goods should report the matter to the Customs or Police immediately.

Copyright @ 2009. Police Media Unit. All Rights Reserved.

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