May 21, 2019 12:31

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Smuggling drugs and wild animal products takes place on a large scale

08:57 | 29/04/2019

VCN - Arrests have indicated the seriousness of drug crimes, as well as crimes involving wild animals and tobacco, all of which have taken place on a large scale. 

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Mr. Dam Thanh The, Chief of the Permanent Office of the National Steering Committee 389 responded to reporters at the press conference. Photo: Q.H

Deputy Director of the Anti-Smuggling and Investigation Department (General Department of Vietnam Customs) Nguyen Khanh Quang made the statement at a press conference on the results of anti-smuggling, trade fraud and counterfeit goods in the first quarter by the National Steering Committee 389 which was held on April 25.

In the first quarter, the Customs force detected and handled 101 smuggling cases worth 14.7 billion VND; 42 drug cases; 3,886 cases of handling administrative violations; and 10 cases of intellectual property infringing.

Smuggling and trade fraud is still occurring complicatedly and has not declined since the beginning of 2019.

In the first quarter, especially in March, the situation of smuggling and trade fraud is always "hot", like the smuggler does not "take a break", Nguyen Khanh Quang said.

The arrests by competent forces have indicated the extent of the crime, the seriousness of the unprecedented violation, especially the crime of drugs and products from wild animals and tobacco have taken place on a large scale.

In terms of drugs, competent forces detected and seized tonnes of drugs. Compared to previous years, the amount of drugs is counted only in grams, so far the amount of drugs is calculated in tonnes and takes place in many areas.

Customs forces have joined hands with other competent forces and the community to perform their work. They discovered many big cases.

Also, Mr. Quang detailed many typical cases discovered by Customs forces in the first quarter.

Regarding products from wild animals, on January 25, in Hai Phong, the Customs forces cracked two cases, seizing 1,500 pangolin scales and 500kg of ivory.

On January 30, in Hai Phong, Customs forces discovered 1,300 kg of pangolin scales and 109 kg of ivory.

Most recently, April 11, at Noi Bai International Airport, Customs forces detected 13 rhino horns, weighing nearly 15 kg.

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Ivory was seized by Hai Phong Customs in January 2019. Photo: T. Bình.

The subjects hide the infringing goods in regular goods like wood. Most of the exhibits originate from African countries that have a route to Asia. In which Vietnam is a destination, a transit point has attracted the attention of international organizations with the desire to coordinate with Vietnamese authorities to prevent this.

Representatives of a number of international organisations when working with Vietnam Customs shared that they have never witnessed the seizures of wildlife products weighing up to tonnes like the seizures of Vietnam Customs. With such a large number of exhibits, it was impossible to calculate the number of elephants, pangolins, rhinos that have been killed for ivory, horns and scales.

This issue also posed a great task for competent forces to prevent in the future.

To achieve such impressive results, besides the objective reasons from the increase in smuggling situation, it showed the close coordination of competent forces is getting more and more effective.

In import and export activities, most cases have a close coordination between the customs force and the police and border defence forces.

Thanks to the close guidance from the Government, the National Steering Committee 389, competent forces are well aware of important roles in coordination in the fight against smuggling.

By Quang Hùng/Thanh Thuy