10 held for selling illegal cigarettes in Geylang

SINGAPORE – A Singaporean man peddling illegal cigarettes out of a flower pot in Lorong 6, Geylang, was arrested in an operation last week, which also saw nine Vietnamese men nabbed for selling illegal cigarettes.

On April 6, a total of 130 packets of duty-unpaid cigarettes were seized, with duty and Goods and Services Tax (GST) exceeding S$1,000.

Customs officers saw the Singaporean man approach a flower pot along a walkway in Geylang. He then lifted the plant and retrieved some packets of cigarettes from the pot to sell them to passers-by.

According to a statement released by the Singapore Customs yesterday, investigations revealed that the man had stuck soil and plants onto a thin circular piece of cardboard in the flower pot, and passed it off as a potted plant.

He faces stiffer punishment as he has previous convictions under the Customs Act.

A Vietnamese man was also caught for allegedly being involved in illegal cigarette activities.

Officers keeping watch nearby spotted the man carrying a brown bag in his hand and walking hurriedly towards a car bearing an L-plate that was parked along Geylang Road. A check of the car turned up duty-unpaid cigarettes in the bag and in the car.

Investigations revealed he had been engaged by an unknown fellow Vietnamese to hide the bag of cigarettes in the car, as the latter had got wind of police presence in the area.

Eight other Vietnamese were also caught for suspected peddling activities in the four-hour operation.

source: www.todayonline.com

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