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Burma’s Mobile Team announced this weekend it had seized over one billion kyat (US$1 million) worth of smuggled goods between August 2013 and the beginning of May this year from seven ports in Rangoon.
The squad’s deputy-director, Myint Oo, said over 70 percent of all contraband was confiscated following tips from members of the public.
“A heavy flow of contraband goods, especially foreign liquor, is smuggled into our ports in many ships,” he said. “We frequently inspect the cargo based on information from the public.”
The official said that 48 raids were conducted by mobile teams during the last nine months at warehouses and on board ships coming in to dock, 12 were instigated by tips from members of the public. Those particular raids yielded no less than 700 million kyat’s worth of illegal goods.
“There are certain products that require import and export licenses, and some goods which don’t,” he added. “In either case, customs tax must be paid.”
Rangoon’s Mobile Team is made up of more than 70 individuals drawn from police, customs and government officials, and media workers.