KARACHI: Directorate General of Customs Intelligence and Investigation (Enforcement Karachi) has lodged an FIR against M/s Al Amna Trading Company and others for attempting to illegally remove mobile phones from Gerry’s Dnata shed at Karachi airport.

Directorate of Customs Intelligence and Investigation – Enforcement has foiled a bid to smuggle huge quantity of foreign origin smart phones of assorted brands from Air Freight Unit, Karachi.

On the information of Director I&I (Enforcement), Samina Wajid, a special team headed by the Deputy Director Mohammad Haroon Malik was constituted to mount surveillance at the AFU, Karachi.

Consequently, two Suzuki vans bearing Registration NOs. KH-9472 and KP- 0677, loaded with 32 cartons, were identified and intercepted in front of Gerry’s Dnata Shed of Air Freight Unit. JIAP, Karachi.

On search, 1200 pieces of foreign origin mobile phones of assorted brands were recovered from one carton while remaining 31 cartons were found to contain auto/body parts of vehicles. On preliminary inquiry, the drivers of the van failed to produce any legal document in respect of aforesaid mobile phones.

On further interrogation, it transpired that the consignment of auto parts in question was imported in the name of Ms. Al-Amna Trading Company Saddar, Karachi from Dubai.

The carton containing mobiles phones was concealed within the cartons of auto parts and was delivered along with them. The scrutiny of GD revealed no declaration regarding import of mobile phones. The estimated value of recovered/seized mobile phones comes to Rs38 million (approx).

An official said that investigations were on a preliminary stage and a cautious proceedings are underway. M/s Al Amna Trading is nominated accused while involvement of other elements is being ascertained.

Sources said that Collector Preventive Saifuddin Junejo on certain reports has initiated audit of auctions held at the Karachi airport auction area. It is known that officials at the auction hall collide with the importers whose goods had been confiscated and remove or replace the goods from auction area to the importers. There are reports that boxes and cartons had been emptied before auction.

Sources said the practice is suspected to be going on for years causing loss to the tune of billions of rupees to the national exchequer.

Deputy Collector Naveed Abbas Memon and Deputy Collector Yusuf Magsi are supervising the scrutiny and audit of auctions held at airport auction hall in the last five years. The exercise would match the goods auctioned with the airways bills.

Collector Preventive has ordered investigations into the conduct of Gerry’s Dnata shed as some of the cameras at the shed were non-operational and there is inefficient light at the shed. It is also being ascertained whether the assistant collector under Section 82 approved removal of goods from shed to auction hall or it was being dome merely on the approval of examiner.

It has also been known that goods were being cleared from the Gerry’s shed on fake Goods Declarations, and it is also being investigated.

Director General Shaukat Ali has appreciated director Samina Wajid, Deputy Director Haroon Malik and the team for quite efficiently catching the scam.