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June 13, 2024
Kampala Daily

Notorious Cigarette Smugglers Nabbed As URA’s ‘Smart Operations’ Continue To Yield Results

Smuggling and selling restricted cigarettes in Uganda is still happening despite the dire consequences and losses that come with the vice. However, two smugglers met their fate after they were caught in a strategically set ambush and covert operation respectively.

URA enforcement spent the better part of Monday waiting for the pair after learning that cigarette smugglers were operating in the border town of Elegu.

The first culprit was apprehended early in the day and discovered to be carrying twenty packs of Supermatch produced in Uganda for export, five cartons of Bombas, and seventeen cartons of Oris cigarettes manufactured in Germany.

Later in the night, a raid was conducted on the residence of the second perpetrator, where 30 cartons of German-made cigarettes were recovered.

Smuggling is an offense according to the East African Community Customs Management Act (EACCMA) under Section 200. A person who commits this offense is liable on conviction to imprisonment for a term not exceeding five years or to a fine equal to 50% of the dutiable value of the goods, or both.

It is also illegal to divert goods that are designated for export into the local market.

URA has intensified operations against smuggling. The tax body recently apprehended three trucks as they ferried 49 rolls of steel coils that were mis-declared as scrap from South Sudan. The Elegu Enforcement received a Non-intrusive inspection (NII) cargo scanner alert about the trucks and immediately intercepted them to uncover over 87,955kgs of steel coils as detailed below;

Truck Reg No. UAM 801T / UAQ 136L was found containing 14 rolls of stainless steel coils with total weight of 25,130kgs in 80 x 80 x 113 cm dimensions.

The second truck Reg No. UBL 234L / UAL 753X 90 was found with 16 rolls of stainless steel coils with total weight of 28,720kgs in 80 x 80 x 113 cm in dimensions.

The third truck Reg No. UBE 928F / UAZ 138Q was found containing 19 rolls of stainless steel coil with total weight of 34,105kgs, also in 80 x 80 x 113 cm dimensions.

Offence management is on-going establish ways of recovering the revenue due which is estimated at close to UGX 100m.

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