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Customs Court approves bail of appraiser involved in betel nuts smuggling

Customs Court approves bail of appraiser involved in betel nuts smuggling

KARACHI: The Customs Court granted post-arrest bail to suspect namely Muhammad Shahid Murad, Appraiser, Customs Collectorate of Appraisement, Customs House Karachi, who was booked in a case of attempting to smuggle non-duty paid 209,540 kilograms betel nuts.

On October 22, 2018, counsel for the accused moved bail petition and argued that his client is innocent and was falsely implicated in this case, who is ready to face trial and giving assurance to the court for appearance on each and every date of hearing; therefore, court may grant him bail. After hearing, court granted him bail and directed him to appear before the court on next date of hearing.

According to the First Information Report (FIR), credible information was received that importer M/s Sualeha Textile Industries and others were involved in a scam of illegal import of betel nuts in collusion with the clearing agents, customs officials and other facilitators and on that information, officials of the customs department visited the spot and found all four containers stuffed with betel nuts and found pressed in bundle scrap which had been stacked in front of containers to conceal the betel nuts.

Investigation officer informed the court that during the initial investigation, it is established beyond any iota of doubt that the suspect, in collusion with other accomplices and abettors has attempted to clear the impugned consignments comprising of betel nuts which were otherwise restricted items as per import policy order in vogue and included in the list of smuggled items, revenue loss on the seized goods has been quantified as Rs46,089,024 and the market value of the offending goods has been estimated to be Rs240,000,000 as per prevailing market.

Case was registered against Faisel Shakeel, owner of M/s Sualeha Textile Industries, Muhammad Zakir, owner of M/s M.Z Enterprises, proprietors and directors of clearing agent M/s Jawad Zubair, Pervaiz Ejaz son of Ahmed Sher, clearing agent of M/s Pervez Ejaz Associates, Rana Fareed, employee of M/s Pervez Ejaz Associates, Muhammad Shahid Murad son of Murad Ali, Appraiser, Customs Collectorate of Appraisement, Najeeb Abid son of Abid Hussain, Appraiser, Customs Collectorate of Appraisement, proprietors and directors of M/s Ansa International, proprietors and directors of M/s Mirza Corporation and others to be ascertained during the investigation.