CrimeNews

Sars confiscates goods worth R1.7-billion in six months

Many of these busts occurred at OR Tambo International Airport.

The South African Revenue Service (Sars) had confiscated goods valued at more than R1.7-billion in the first six months of this year.

Many of these busts occurred at OR Tambo International Airport.

Some of the statistics include:

Narcotics: 339 busts valued at R171 177 653

Cigarettes: 159 busts valued at R33 345 064

CITES (including endangered species such as abalone): 16 busts valued at R13 996 635

Currency: 13 busts valued at R52 903 426

Viagra/Viagra generics: 97 busts valued at R40 441 400

Counterfeit clothing, footwear and other goods: 3 351 busts valued at R1 414 740 024

Clothing and textiles (second hand and other infringements): 20 busts valued at R5 187 702

Alcohol: 117 busts valued at R196 868

Compared with the same period last year, the number and value of busts had increased this year – 4 122 busts valued at R1 732 339 421 this year, compared to 1 763 busts valued at R1 648 779 675 last year.

Acting chief officer for customs and excise Beyers Theron congratulated his officers. However, he added that he believed there was more than customs and Sars could do to make inroads into the illicit economy.

“We need to start looking at trends and patterns and become more strategic in the way we are dealing with some of these risks.”

Some of the high-profile busts which took place during the first six months of this year include:

Ketamine and methaqualone (precursors to Mandrax) with an estimated value of R32 000 400, en route from Kenya to South Africa, seized at OR Tambo International Airport on April 10.

Methaqualone with an estimated value of R30 000 000, en route from China to South Africa, seized at OR Tambo International Airport on January 31.

Sexual enhancement tablets (generic Viagra) valued at R30 000 000, en route from India to South Africa, seized at OR Tambo International Airport on May 13.

Currency (USD & GBP) valued R15 000 000, en route from South Africa to Dubai, seized at OR Tambo International Airport on February 1.

Abalone with an estimated value of R10 000 000, en route from South Africa to China, seized at Port Elizabeth Harbour on January 26.

Currency (ZAR & USD) valued R6 992 569, en route from South Africa to Mauritius, seized at OR Tambo International Airport on May 4.

Currency (ZAR) valued R6 332 008, en route from South Africa to Dubai, seized at OR Tambo International Airport on March 27.

Kamagra (generic Viagra) valued at R4 000 000, en route from India to South Africa, seized at OR Tambo International Airport on January 15.

Abalone with an estimated value of R2 370 000, en route from South Africa to Sri Lanka via Dubai, seized at Durban Harbour on February 21.

1 766 200 cigarettes seized at Beit Bridge Border Post on April 17.

500 000 cigarettes seized at Beit Bridge Border Post on April 27.

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