Customs Seizes Illicit Tobacco Worth GH¢7.95m In Crackdown On Smuggling

Customs Seizes Illicit Tobacco Worth GH¢7.95m In Crackdown On Smuggling

In a significant victory against the illicit trade of tobacco products, the Customs Division of the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) has successfully confiscated a substantial quantity of unlawfully smuggled tobacco.

The street value of the confiscated products is estimated at GH¢7,951,238.39.

The contraband, which entered Ghana through unapproved border routes, was intercepted as part of the ongoing efforts to curb the smuggling, importation and sale of illicit tobacco products infiltrating Ghanaian markets.

The confiscated products, bearing popular brands, such as Oris Double Apple, Business Royals, Gold Seal, Bon, Yes, and Business Kings, were found to be in violation of the Public Health Act 851, 2012 and the Tobacco Control Regulations (TCR), 2016 (L.I. 2247). Section 16 of the TCR explicitly prohibits the manufacturing, importation, exportation, supply, possession or sale of illicit tobacco or tobacco products.

Furthermore, Section 15 of the Regulations mandates that tobacco or tobacco products must be registered by the Food and Drugs Authority (FDA) before manufacturing, importation or sale.

The seized products failed to meet standards, lacking essential elements such as graphic health warnings, the “For Sale in Ghana” inscription, and Ghana Tax Stamps.

Ongoing investigations aim to identify and apprehend individuals responsible for the illicit trade.

The GRA pledges close collaboration with relevant government agencies to ensure the arrest, prosecution and appropriate sanctions for those involved. All confiscated products will be destroyed following legal protocols.

The GRA urges the public to report any information on warehouses or illicit storage locations, contributing to the fight against illegal trade. This collaborative effort aims to safeguard national revenue and protect legitimate businesses from the detrimental effects of illicit activities.

Source: Peace Fm Online