CBI REGISTERS A CASE AGAINST THREE CUSTOMS OFFICIALS AND OTHERS UNDER RELEVANT SECTIONS OF IPC AND P.C.ACT.
The Central Bureau of Investigation has registered a case U/s 120 B r/w 409, 477A IPC and & Sec.13(2) r/w 13(1)(c) & (d) of PC Act, 1988 against Assistant Commissioner(Customs), Supdt. of Customs, Preventive Officer(Customs), all of Air Cargo Complex, Cochin International Airport, Nedumbassery, Ernakulam and unknown others.
The allegation in brief is that Kuwait based private firm had sent 3 items of electronic goods i.e. one Plasma T.V., a Sound System and Mounting brackets worth Rs.90,727/- in favour of a Lady, resident of Melattoor P.O., Trichur, whose husband was an employee of the above firm. The items were sent to her as gift items on the occasion of her house warming and the said consignment was arrived at Nedumbassery Airport. On receipt of the consignments, the lady preferred a Bill of Entry through Cochin based CHA. On receipt of the Bill of Entry before the Customs authorities at CIAL Nedumbassery, the Assistant Commissioner noted that the imported goods were electronic goods and the value of the same exceeded the exempted limit. He also noted that the import appears to be in violation of Foreign Trade Policy and that the goods were valued at Rs.90,727/- Hence, the same were liable to be confiscated under Customs Act.
As the Customs officials after examination of the consignment, imposed heavy customs duty, the lady was not interested for taking delivery of the consignment with such huge penalty and therefore abandoned the consignment.
In pursuance of the conspiracy among themselves with dishonest intention to misappropriate the consignment, a challan was preferred on behalf of the lady towards cancellation of Bill Entry, purportedly showing the abandonment of the consignment. As per procedure, the above officials did not either tranship the goods back or sent to the Customs House, Cochin after confiscation for public auction. After falsifying the records, the accused allowed clearance of the consignment in a fictitious name by preferring Baggage Declaration. The value of consignment was assessed at Rs.30,000/- and accordingly the duty was calculated as Rs.4,635/-. On payment of the duty with SBT, Nedumbassery, the consignment was cleared out of the Customs area by the other accused persons i.e. Supdt. of Customs & Preventive Officer and the consignment was misappropriated in a fictitious name.
Searches were conducted at the residential premises of the accused person. The misappropriated items were seized from the residence of the Assistant Commissioner of Customs at Bangalore.
Further investigation is continuing.
CBI Press Release
New Delhi , 11.01.2012