Case Study: Singapore - Logistics company manager fined $52,000 for multiple Customs Act offences


12 charges - $52K

A 50-year-old logistics company manager was fined $52,000 for various offences under the Singapore Customs Act for making incorrect declarations, breaching permit conditions, failing to deposit dutiable goods in a licensed warehouse and submitting false documents to the Singapore Customs. Jean Heng pleaded guilty to 12 charges, while another 41 charges were taken into consideration during sentencing.


An export of cigarette and liquor that never happened

On June 9, 2016, Singapore Customs officers conducted a check at a warehouse at Airport Logistics Park Singapore and discovered 42 pallets of dutiable liquors and cigarettes belonging to Tania Asia Logistics that were supposed to be exported.

A total of 16,435 cartons and 11 packets of cigarettes, and 22,094 bottles of liquors were seized from the warehouse and forfeited.


Intentional wong-doings

  • Heng had made incorrect declarations to the Singapore Customs on two occasions.

  • She also instructed staff to make false declarations twice by declaring that the cigarettes were exported. This was despite her knowing that the cigarettes were not exported and were instead stored in the warehouse.


By storing the cigarettes in the warehouse, Heng also breached the permit condition on five occasions, Singapore Customs said, as the warehouse was not licensed to store dutiable goods such as cigarettes.


Singapore Customs' investigations also revealed that in 2013, Heng applied for permits for the shipment of liquors through Singapore on two occasions. Some of the liquors were not exported and stored in the warehouse instead. Heng then created fraudulent invoices and altered the supporting documents of other shipments before submitting them so as to mislead the authorities into believing that the liquors were exported.


Takeaway

Customs Managers and Global Trade Compliance Professionals need to be aware of their compliance obligations and ensure that no fraudulent activity takes place. Staying up-to-date through professional legislative monitoring, ongoing training, and education and first-class support can help to set up processes and procedures to verify and strengthen compliance with customs procedures.


Sources


https://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/courts-crime/logistics-company-manager-fined-52000-for-multiple-customs-act-offences


https://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/woman-fined-52k-for-customs-offences

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