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Customs Court seeks complete probe against suspects in betel nuts smuggling case

Customs Court seeks complete probe against suspects in betel nuts smuggling case

KARACHI: Customs Court Judge Syed Faiz Rasool Rashdi on Tuesday directed investigation officer of the Customs Collectorate of Appraisement East to complete investigation and submit a charge sheet against Muhammad Ashraf, proprietor of M/s Best Hope Enterprises and others. The suspects were booked in a betel nuts smuggling case and were also involved in evasion of duties and taxes besides mis-declaration of goods.

During the hearing, investigation officer informed the court that the customs authorities intercepted containers covered under goods at South Asia Pakistan Terminal (SAPT) Karachi and found 9,800 kilogram betel nuts worth Rs 1,992,908.

He further informed the court that during the investigations, it has been established beyond any doubt that said the suspects in collusion with other accomplices in crime were indulged in smuggling of betel nuts under the garb of turmeric goods. He told the court the suspects intended to get the goods cleared illegally by evading legitimate amount of duties and taxes to the tune of Rs 1,809,586, they have, thus, contravened provision of section 2 (s) 16, 32A, and 79 of the Customs Act, 1969 punishable under clauses 1,8 (i), 9, 14 A, 45 & 46 of section ibid  read with allied laws and procedure.

Investigation officer submitted that consequent upon approval of the competent authority, this first information report is lodged accordingly for in-depth investigation into the matter.

After the hearing, court directed investigation officer to complete investigation and submit charge sheet against them on next date of hearing.