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Probe reveals senior Customs official involved in smuggling and tax evasion

KUWAIT CITY, April 8: Investigations conducted by the Kuwait General Administration of Customs (KGAC) recently in the case of corruption involving one of the senior administrators showed the suspect’s involvement in many cases of smuggling and customs evasion and this has been officially documented in customs statements, reports Al-Rai daily.

Sources familiar with the Al-Rai daily revealed that the suspect circumvented in several ways to earn money illegally, taking advantage of his supervisory position and until he reached the top position, by doing everything from allowing counterfeit goods to enter the country through collusion with other senior officials, some of whom were recently referred to retirement.

The sources pointed out the corrupt leader used several methods to pass the counterfeit goods, which he imported through his company in 20 and 40 feet containers.

After the containers arrive at the port he would wait for an opportune time to release the containers which sometimes took a month and if he failed to release the containers he would write to the administration saying the consignment arrived at the port from one of the Asian countries by mistake and was destined for one of the ports in the region and then would allow the ‘re-export’ of the goods in blatant violation of the law because such procedures are normally done through the legal affairs department.

The sources added that the customs procedures related to the imported goods include paying fees and inspection of the container, but the corrupt official violated all procedures and re-exported the goods without inspection.

The sources pointed to the discovery of two smuggling cases involving the suspect’s company and how the suspect through twisted methods destroyed the records and goods (on paper only) but re-exported the goods.

It has been discovered that the customs fines paid on counterfeit goods do not exceed a few dinars. The sources pointed out that the investigations proved suspicions of corruption, damage to public money and customs evasion and conflicts of interest.

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