Collector Adjudication Asif Marghoob Siddiqui comes under FIA inquiry

KARACHI: Director General Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) Bashir Memon has ordered an inquiry into the assets of Collector Adjudication Asif Marghoob Siddiqui as the Collector Adjudication issued several controversial decisions according undue favors to the accused importers.

In a recent stance, Asif Marghoob Siddiqui imposed a penalty of Rs3.0 million on M/s BGP Pakistan International and a penalty of Rs1.0 million on clearing agent M/s Internal Moving and Trading Company. However, the Collector Adjudication noted M/sBGP Pakistan was not liable to pay duty and taxes on temporary imports. The decision comes surprising rather suspicious as M/s BGP Pakistan has already voluntarily submitted an amount of Rs637 million into the government exchequer.

Asif Marghoob Siddiqui has also ordered to refund the amount recovered from M/s BGP Pakistan. It is worth mentioning here that Chief Collector Enforcement Manzoor Memon in an official letter that recovery of duty and taxes from M/s BGP Pakistan seemed incorrect.

After the subject adjudication order passed by Asif Marghoob Siddiqui Director General FIA Bashir Memon had a meeting with Chairman FBR and discussed the affairs pertaining to Collector Adjudication. Chairman FBR gave his nod to the inquiry against the Collector.

Assistant Director FIA Ali Murad Baladi has been appointed the Investigation Officer and bank accounts, other assets of Asif Marghoob Siddiqui and his family members have come under scrutiny.

FIA had detected fraudulent re-export of Surveying Equipments of M/s BGP (Pakistan) International, on the strength of bogus/forged documents, without paying leviable duties/taxes. The consignment was scheduled for shipment to China on 03.10.2017 through their Custom Clearing Agent M/s International Moving & Trading Company (IMT Co), which was intercepted by FIA on 02.10.2017.

M/s BPG (Pakistan) Ltd got Custom Clearance for shipment of surveying equipments without paying leviable duties & taxes by misusing provision of SRO-678(I)/2004, in connivance with their Clearing Agent M/s IMT Co.  Examination of the documents revealed that Custom authorities had cleared the goods on the basis of fake/bogus Corporate Guarantees. The goods meant for re-export were earlier imported in year 2014 & 2015.

Consequent upon timely action of FIA, Pakistan Custom Authorities started contravention proceedings against M/s BGP (Pakistan) International & M/s IMT Co (Clearing Agent), on the charges of evasion of leviable duties & taxes by misusing benefit of SRO-678(I) 2004 presenting Forged/ Fake Corporate Guarantees for Custom’s Clearance.

M/s BGP (Pakistan) International is working in Pakistan since 1995 and is engaged in business with numerous Oil & Gas producing companies. M/s BGP (Pakistan) International has imported hundreds of consignments of Surveying equipment under provision of SRO-678(I) 2004 but the company didn’t complied with terms and regulations of SRO-678(I)2004. The temporary imports are immune to levied duties & taxes subject to providing a Corporate Guarantee for each consignment whereby importing company indemnify that imported goods will be re-exported within two years (now five years) or completion of project, whichever is earlier. However M/s BGP (Pakistan) has not re-exported any temporarily imported consignment of surveying equipments so far, thus, causing serious violation of SRO-678(I) 2004.

M/s BGP (Pakistan) International fraudulently tried to re-export its surveying equipments imported in the years 2014 & 2015, on the strength of Fake/Bogus Corporate Guarantees. The consignment was detained and adjudication proceedings are underway at Customs while FIA is looking after criminal aspect of the case, which culminated into FIR No.33/2017.

The record procured from various Customs collectorates reveals that 125 Corporate Guarantees of M/s BGP (Pakistan) International have already expired but the company did not re-exported the temporary imports, hence, the company is liable to pay all leviable duties & taxes plus surcharge.

After lodging of FIR No. 33/2017, the Country Manager Zhang Zhongmin and Deputy Country Manager Li Chonghong of M/s BGP Pakistan International were arrested. During remand period, M/s BGP Pakistan International through their Finance Controller agreed to pay the evaded revenue against 125 Corporate Guarantees and voluntarily submitted Rs637 million.

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