Pakistan Customs officials have seized smuggled Japanese automobile parts worth Rs1.5 billion during an intelligence-based raid on a warehouse in the SITE industrial area on Tuesday. The seizure includes high-quality tie-rods, spark plugs, and other spare parts.
Director General Customs Intelligence Faiz Chadhar received a tip-off about a stockpile of smuggled auto parts stored in a warehouse in the SITE industrial area, Director Customs Intelligence Karachi Engineer Habib Ahmed told a news conference where he was flanked by Additional Director Afzal Ahmed and Deputy Director Wasif Malik.
A team, led by Wasif Malik, conducted a seven-day non-stop surveillance of the warehouse. The recce was followed by a systematic raid which yielded Japanese auto parts worth Rs1.5 billion.
On September 31, another raid was conducted based on an intelligence report at a bungalow in DHA Phase-I. China-made smuggled spark plugs worth Rs1.6 million were seized, Habib Ahmed further revealed. A case was registered.
Read Huge quantity of ‘smuggled’ goods recovered
As part of the ongoing anti-smuggling campaign, the Customs Directorate has also seized two million sticks of smuggled cigarettes of foreign brands and other illicit items in the Saddar area, with a total value of Rs100 million. In the current month alone, smuggled items worth Rs2.45 billion have been seized in 25 different operations. Over the past five months, smuggled items worth Rs4.54 billion have been confiscated.
The Customs director emphasised that the case of the shipment of Japanese smuggled auto parts in Karachi is not ordinary but significant. Money laundering is suspected in this. However, no arrests have been made so far, and the warehouse owners are currently absconding.
Addressing another inquiry, he stated that the investigation into the case of iPhones worth Rs130 million seized from Karachi airport is ongoing. The case is being probed for potential connections to money laundering.
Published in The Express Tribune, November 15th2023.