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Regional News Thu, 15 Mar 2012

Customs destroy smuggled foreign cigarettes in Wa

The Upper West Regional Office of the Customs Division of the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) has destroyed 139 cartons of smuggled foreign cigarettes valued at GH¢12,321.50.

The 6,974 rims of smuggled cigarettes, which would have attracted duty of about GH¢39,831.18, were intercepted by officials of the Division last year at Kaleo in the Nadowli District of the Upper West Region, and Jindabor, Bole and Chacha in the Bole District of the Northern region.

The two cigarette brands namely; Business Royals and London King Size were set ablaze on Wednesday at the Wa Municipal official dumping site in the presence of some officers of the Bureau of National Investigation, the Police, the Ghana National Fire Service, the Environmental Protection Agency, Environmental Health Officers and members of the Media.

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Briefing journalists at the site, Mr. Ben Suuri, Sector Commander of the Division, said cigarette smuggling was becoming rampant in the Region. He said the smugglers upon anticipating danger of being arrested, abandoned the items and escaped.

Mr. Suuri said that after unsuccessful investigations to fish out the smugglers, they had no other choice than to destroy the cigarette, which were not labeled in English.

He called for the strengthening of security at the country’s borders to prevent smuggling.**

Source: GNA
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