Mumbai: The Central Intelligence Unit (CIU) of the Jawaharlal Nehru Custom House (JNCH), Nhava Sheva, have arrested three individuals for allegedly attempting to smuggle cosmetics valued at ₹2.1 crore. The agency had uncovered the racket after acting upon specific intelligence that goods meant for re-export were being diverted to the domestic market, replacing with other goods for re-export in gross violation of the Customs Act.
According to the remand application submitted by Customs to the court at Uran, the cosmetics imported in May of this year were warehoused at Panvel with the intention of being re-exported out of India. At the time of re-export, 1145 boxes of cosmetics from the warehouse were supposed to reach the Container Freight Station (CFS). However, on July 1, 21 pallets loaded with cement bricks were brought into the CFS with fraudulent intentions, and permission for export was obtained for the pallets laden with cement bricks.
The remand application further stated that “the 1145 boxes of cosmetics from the warehouse were loaded onto three trucks and were replaced with cement bricks. The timely interception and thwarting by the CIU-JNCH Customs team of the smuggling of the warehoused cosmetics by the accused (which are supposed to be re-exported), the accused could have been successful in defrauding the exchequer in terms of customs duty and in violating the provisions of the Drugs and Cosmetic Act and Rules, Intellectual Property Rights and the Legal Metrology provisions, thereby endangering the safety of public health as well as the stability of the financial system of the country. Thus, it is clear that the accused had hatched a conspiracy to circumvent the restrictions imposed on the import of cosmetics as well as to evade customs duty.”