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Lang Son Customs: Consolidating 'defense' against smuggling

10:18 | 29/12/2016

VCN- On the coming days of Tet Lunar holiday, the smuggling and commercial fraud in the Northern border provinces, especially in Lang Son province become quite complicated. In order to control this situation, the Lang Son Customs Department has actively made plans for prevention.

hai quan lang son chu dong cung co phong tuyen chong buon lau Smuggled fireworks from border areas
hai quan lang son chu dong cung co phong tuyen chong buon lau Severely handling cases of temporary import for re-export for smuggling
hai quan lang son chu dong cung co phong tuyen chong buon lau Many shipments of toys and games for children re-exported
hai quan lang son chu dong cung co phong tuyen chong buon lau
The functional forces destroy exhibits in violated cases. Photo: Hong Nu.

Increasingly sophisticated tricks

hai quan lang son chu dong cung co phong tuyen chong buon lau
Perpetrators carry illicit goods on minor trails. Photo: Hong Nu.

At the border area of Lang Son province in the last days of December 2016, a reporter of the Customs Newspaper found that smuggling activities still operated openly. In Dong Dang town, there were a large number of motorcycles and small trucks transporting illicit goods into the domestic market for consumption. Many "hot" regions related to smuggling near the Chinese border include Coc Nam, Huu Nghi, Tan Thanh and Chi Ma.

In fact, in recent times, the functional forces in Lang Son province have tried their best to struggle against smuggling but they can not prevent all smuggling cases. Through a series of smuggling and illegal transportation of contraband goods which the Lang Son Customs Department discovered, we can see that perpetrators have had a tendency to transport illicit goods through minor roads, trails and crossings or keep contraband goods in hidden spaces to deceive the functional forces, especially taking advantage of loopholes in e-Customs procedures for illegal transportation of goods across borders.

In particular, owners of illicit goods often hired people from other provinces and local people in China to transport contraband goods into Vietnam. The perpetrators usually used the radio and mobile phones to closely monitor the functional forces. At night and at dawn, owners of illicit goods directed employees to carry goods through mountains to avoid checkpoints of functional forces. Moreover, owners of illicit goods requested carriers to deposit to create responsibilities between the owners of smuggled goods and carriers.

Specifically, grocery items, appliances, electronics and clothes are the main products smuggled across borders because of a large gap in price between smuggled goods and domestic goods. Accordingly, the anti-smuggling forces have also faced many difficulties with increasingly sophisticated tricks of perpetrators.

Speaking to the reporter of the Customs Newspaper, a representative of the Coc Nam Customs Branch said, onwers of illicit goods regularly assigned their employees to monitor anti-smuggling forces, equipped with motorcycles, telephones, knives and weapons to react. When detecting smuggling cases, functional forces were even attacked with weapons. After transporting smuggled goods into Vietnam’s territory, the goods will be legitimized by conducting tax receipts and sales invoices. Then, these goods are transported along Highway 1A and 1B into the domestic market for consumption.

The statistics show that, from the beginning of 2016 to date, the Lang Son Customs Department has detected and handled 433 cases of smuggling, commercial fraud and violations of Customs procedures, worth nearly 22 billion vnd. In particular, there were 323 cases of violation of Customs administration, worth 14.8 billion vnd; 86 cases of smuggling, worth 6.7 billion vnd; 1 case (0.5 kg) of crystal drugs and 15.8 kg of heroin; 3 cases of violation of Intellectual Property Rights; 13,000 counterfeit shampoo packets; 20 other violations with 315.8 kg of fireworks and 1 criminal case prosecuted by the functional authorities. The Lang Son Customs Department also collaborated with the Department of Finance to conduct an auction with an amount of 3.34 billion vnd for the State budget (this money will be paid into the budget of Lang Son province).

hai quan lang son chu dong cung co phong tuyen chong buon lau
Perpetrators use motorcycles to transport illicit goods. Photo: Hong Nu.

Active with all plans

At the border area of Lang Son province, the functional forces have dealt with a large number of perpetrators, so they always have to guard 24 hours per day at 21 checkpoints in arduous conditions.

Speaking to the reporter of the Customs Newspaper, Mr. Nong Van Vinh, the Deputy Director of the Lang Son Customs Department said, from 2014, in order to further support Customs Branches at the border area in the fight against smuggling before, during and after Tet Lunar holiday, the Lang Son Customs Department has established a vanguard team with 24 members including leaders and civil servants of the Lang Son Customs Department. Accordingly, the vanguard team has developed a plan to strengthen and support relevant units to destroy smuggling cases.

According to the leader of the vanguard team, Mr. Tran Anh Tuan (also the Deputy Director of the Data and Information Technology Center), the vanguard team has been responsible for coordinating and supporting Customs Branches to fight against smuggling in a timely fashion. Accordingly, all of the team members must contact each other 24 hours per day to get ready to perform assigned tasks .

The Deputy Director of the Lang Son Customs Department, Mr. Nong Van Vinh said smuggling activities will become much more complicated in the coming days of Dinh Dau Tet Lunar holiday with various and sophisticated tricks. Perpetrators may transport smuggled goods across borders through minor trails and crossings to avoid functional forces. Besides, the number of residents of Vietnam and China in these areas is also increasing, which makes the control of people and vehicles across borders more difficult. In this context, the Lang Son Customs Department has made plans to combat smuggling, commercial fraud and counterfeiting before, during and after Tet Lunar holiday.

Accordingly, the subordinate units of the Department are assigned to strengthen inspections and control of exported and imported goods. Specifically, conducting operational measures and inspections, strict control, preventing smuggling and illegal transportation of goods across trails and border crossings; detecting and handling violations related to licenses, quality and conformity for some products such as fabrics, cosmetics, fertilizers, plant protection products, plant machinery, equipment, used spare parts and other contraband goods.

hai quan lang son chu dong cung co phong tuyen chong buon lau Illicit food smuggling is “sophisticated”

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"The Lang Son Customs Department has also strengthened inspections on goods at Dong Dang town, Cao Loc district. In particular, functional forces have checked the warehouses at border areas to detect and promptly handle acts of trading and transporting contraband goods", Mr. Vinh stressed.

By Dao Le/ Hoang Anh