Kuala Belait - Stiff punishments are meted out to those found guilty of smuggling cigarettes without the official Brunei health warning, but people trying to make a fast buck continue to take the risk. As a result, the Customs officers at border posts have to be vigilant to be one up on the smugglers.
A routine check yesterday at 10.30am at the Sungai Tujoh Control Post by Customs officers on a Brunei-registered vehicle revealed a record haul of cigarettes.
A total of 421 cartons of various brands of undeclared cigarettes were found in the bonnet of the vehicle.
It was the biggest haul of contraband cigarettes seized by the Royal Customs and Excise Department in Belait this year.
The Customs officers were unable to open the bonnet of the vehicle while the 43-year-old local driver claimed that it could not be opened. Suspecting something amiss, they dismantled the back-seat cushion and found the contraband hidden inside the bonnet.
Earlier at 6.10am yesterday, officers detained a Brunei-registered vehicle driven by a foreign national working in the country aged around 50. Six cartons of various brands of undeclared cigarettes were found hidden in the vehicle's door.
Both suspects were brought to the Royal Brunei Customs and Excise Department in Belait for further investigation.
They will be charged under Section 146 of the Excise Order 2006.--Courtesy of Borneo Bulletin