: :inin Kyiv (EET)

Ukrainian diplomats caught smuggling cigarettes worth UAH 600,000


A batch of cigarettes worth over UAH 600,000 has been discovered at a border check point on a Ukraine-Hungary border in a vehicle driven by a man with a diplomatic passport, the State Fiscal Service in Zakarpattia region has reported.
On Saturday, May 21, 2016, a VW Transporter car driven by a citizen of Ukraine with a diplomatic passport entered the ”green line” [indicating there are no taxed goods to be reported to the customs officers], according to the State Fiscal Service of Ukraine.
The driver presented a letter of one of Ukraine`s embassies that the vehicle transported a diplomatic cargo, which according to the Convention is not subject to customs inspection, the State Fiscal Service said.
”As the vehicle`s windows were toned, the customs officers were not able to carry out a visual inspection of cargo without opening the car. In the presence of the security service officers, the driver was offered to provide an opportunity to carry out a visual inspection of the vehicle. However, the driver refused to grant access without the permission and direct presence on the scene of a representative of the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry,” the report says.
Later, on oral instructions of his supervisors, the man attempted to leave the checkpoint and return to the Ukrainian territory. But the border guards stopped the car, which was later thoroughly inspected.
”During the inspection of the vehicle, it was discovered that 56,890 packs of cigarettes of domestic production with the Ukrainian excise stamps had been hidden in the cabin and structural cavities of the right and left sides of the car body,” the press service said.
The driver refused to comment on the revealed goods.
”Thus, the citizen of Ukraine committed actions aimed at transporting cigarettes of domestic production with Ukrainian excise stamps worth UAH 620,911 through the customs border of Ukraine,” the border guards reported.
”The batch of cigarettes and the vehicle worth a total of UAH 881,084 were seized,” reads the report.

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