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SRO 1220(I)/2015 violation: Customs Preventive starts process to cancel license of PIL, Pacific Delta Shipping

SRO 1220(I)/2015 violation: Customs Preventive starts process to cancel license of PIL, Pacific Delta Shipping

KARACHI: Pacific International Lines (PIL) and its agents in Pakistan, M/s Pacific Delta Shipping (Pvt) Ltd who are harassing and blackmailing importers to get additional demurrage and detention charges should face law of court as their demands are sheer violation of the Customs Act 1969 and SRO 1220(I)/2015. Licenses of PIL and Pacific Delta might be cancelled after lodging FIRs for breaching SRO 1220(I)/2015.

Law under SRO 1220(I)/2015 explains that shipping companies cannot charge any demurrage and detention where specifically it is not agreed and also specifically not mentioned on the B/L (Bill of Lading).

As per section 604 of SRO 1220(I)/2015, the licensing authority (customs) may cancel or refuse to renew license of these shipping companies and agents if they found:

  • the licensee is involved in criminal cases, established through conviction under any law for the time being in force;
  • or the licensee has violated any applicable law including the provisions of the Act and rules made thereunder or acted in a dishonest manner;
  • or the previous record of business showed involvement of licensee in any of the offenses mentioned in the Act.
  • The license would be cancelled if the licensee has in the course of its customs business, with intent to defraud, in any manner, wilfully or knowingly deceived, misled or threatened any client.

Meanwhile, in a move to cancel the licenses of PIL and their agents Pacific Delta, Customs Preventive through Assistant Collector Licensing Hameer Khan has already written letter to importers to provide GD copies of goods that are illegally held by these shipping lines and are violating SRO 1220 (I)/ 2015. In fact, the owners, managers, staff of PIL, Pacific Delta Shipping could face NAB, FIA enquiries for their alleged criminal acts of holding back the goods of importers of Pakistan. They could also face 7 years imprisonment if convicted under sections 34, 407, 409, 420, 506 of Pakistan Penal Code as per applications already received by Jackson police station.

Customs Today has already procured copies of the letters issued by Customs Preventive department while pursuing to cancel licenses and also of various FIR application copies received by the police station. Assistant Collector Licensing, Hameer Khan in a letter reference No S2/Misc/10/2018-Lic (P) sent to an importer wrote in the subject line as: “……cancelation of license of Pacific Delta Shipping (Pvt) Ltd under rules 603 (Q), 603 (R), 604 (Q) and 607 (E), others under SRO 1220 (I)/2015. Mentioning “….Please provide copies of required documents early so as to proceed further in the matter.”

Business community has further urged the importers of Pakistan to provide GD copies of their consignments to Customs preventive department that are blocked by PIL and Pacific Delta merely on the pretext of demurrage or detention charges. Also, business community has alerted all the importers loading their goods on these specific vessels to be careful as their goods would not reach Pakistan when the licenses of PIL & Pacific Delta are cancelled or suspended. When licenses are cancelled of these shipping lines then the goods loaded on them would have to be called at transit locations like Dubai, Singapore, etc. instead of reaching Karachi ports.

S S Teo 1

Earlier, importers also demanded that PIL and Pacific Delta should waive off 100% of charges including demurrage and detention as none of these charges were specifically agreed between both the parties which is necessary under the law to put any such charges on importers. {Refer Rules 603(q), 603(r), 604(p), 604(q) & 607(e), others under SRO 1220/ 2015}.

Importers further said if Pacific Delta (agents of PIL) did not comply with its obligation of waving 100% charges of detention and demurrage, then necessary legal action will be taken under the law which includes penalty on PIL and also cancellation of its license under SRO 1220(I)/2015.

Meanwhile, importers lodged application to register FIR against Pacific International Lines (PIL) and its agents in Pakistan, Pacific Delta Shipping (Pvt) Ltd for conspiracy, cheating and criminal breach of trust under PPC 407, 409, 420, 427, 506 and others so that these fraudsters are stopped to blackmail genuine importers by demanding ‘illegal’ additional charges.

Pacific International Lines is a shipping company incorporated in Singapore in 1967. The founder of PIL is the Chinese entrepreneur Chang Yun Chung. While Bakhtiar Khan is owner of Delta Group of Companies and Chief Executive Officer at Delta Transport (Pvt) Ltd enganged with businesses like transportation, trucking and railroad. Pacific Delta Shipping (Pvt) Ltd is also a company of Delta Group and working as agents of PIL in Pakistan.

PIL

Importers said PIL Ltd and its agents in Pakistan, Pacific Delta are harassing and disturbing genuine importers through illegal holding & blocking of their imported goods for the sake of demanding additional demurrage and detention charges in violation of relevant customs laws. Importers have filed FIR application against this shipping line and its agents in Pakistan under penal sections PPC 34, 407, 409, 420, 427, 506, besides others.

Importers said PIL Ltd and its agents M/s Pacific Delta Shipping are deliberately holding the containers for minting illegal money and causing huge losses to the national exchequer by slowing down of revenue generation. Importers said they give goods as trust (amaanat) to the PIL Ltd. but their goods are held illegally to blackmail them to pay heavy amounts of charges and thus the PIL Ltd & its agents M/s Pacific Delta make good wealth through criminal means.

Importers told Customs Today, “they are suffering heavily daily due to non-availability of their goods, along with reputation loss & loss of customers, etc. and also the goods quality is deteriorating daily which leads to total loss very soon if the goods are not disposed in the markets”.

peter chang PIL

As per details, “importers, through their shipper/agents in China, handed the goods to PIL Ltd. as trust to be delivered and released here at Karachi. The shipping lines PIL Ltd nominated M/S Pacific Delta Shipping (Pvt) Ltd as their agents at Karachi for delivery of goods. Importers also long back paid in full to the shipping lines the ocean freight charges as agreed between the parties. But despite repeated reminders and visiting office of M/S Pacific Delta Shipping (Pvt) Ltd, they did not release the goods yet”.

Importers said, “The actions of PIL Ltd. through its owners, management and staff including but not limited to S.S.Teo, Peter Chang, Tan Chor Kee, William Tay, Teo Tend Seng, Tony Teo, Choo Wee Teo, Kuan Kim Kin, others and of M/S Pacific Delta Shipping (Pvt) Ltd through its owners, management and staff including but not limited to Bakhtiar Khan, Naveed Ahmad Khan, Tay Kian Phuan William, Teo Chew Seng, Teo Siong Seng, Qamar Naqi, Baig Mirza Mueez, Khan Imran and others, individually and jointly, tantamount to conspiracy, criminal breach of trust, cheating, mischief to cause losses, threatening, etc. which attract penal sections under PPC 34, 407, 409, 420, 427, 506, besides others.”

Sources confirmed that the importers have finally filed FIR application against PIL Ltd and its agents in Pakistan M/s Pacific Delta Shipping and they are following up with the Jackson police station on daily basis. The police officials assured the applicants that soon they will lodge the FIR according to law and take necessary legal action against all the accused persons involved in the mega scandal.