Singling out one appellant: Customs Tribunal dismisses appeal by Director Customs I&I

KARACHI: The Special Customs Appellate Tribunal, Bench II comprising Chairman, Justice (Rtd) Malik Manzoor Hussain and Member Judicial I, Islamabad dismissed an appeal filed by Deputy Director, Directorate General of Intelligence and Investigations as it singled out only one appellant/importer out of seven.

According to details, Saeedabad Police and Customs I&I intercepted a Shehzore mini truck at Hub River Road near Khursheed Pura Graveyard, Saeedabad  and found it laden with 34 bags of allegedly smuggled black tea of foreign origin. The driver as well as the owners of the tea bags failed to produce legal import documents at which the tea bags were rightly confiscated as per orders of the Adjudicating Officer.

The owners/importer filed an appeal before Collector Custom (Appeals) which was allowed on 30-4-2014 and release of the tea was ordered on payment of leviable duty and taxes along with 20 per cent redemption fine.

The Customs I&I then file the instant appeal no K 584/2014 on ground that the seizure of the goods was in accordance with the law under section 156(2) and 187 of the Customs Act 1969.

The counsel for respondent submitted that seven appeals were disposed of by the appellate authority and Customs I&I choose to file appeal against respondent/appellant alone therefore the order by the appellate authority has attained finality.

The tribunal agreeing with the argument of the counsel for respondent/importer said that it was well settled principle of law that if an appeal is disposed with other appeals through a common judgment then all appeals shall be challenged .

The Customs Tribunal observing that appellant failed to justify the ground on which the respondent was singled out dismissed the appeal as not maintainable.

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