A 49-year-old Malaysian national has been sentenced to 11 months’ jail for possession of tobacco products, knowing that the goods were imported with the intention of defrauding revenue.

The man was sentenced in County Court of Victoria this week (7 December 2017) after being found guilty of one count of possess and convey tobacco product contrary to section 233BABAD(2) of the customs Act 1901.

The Australian Border Force (ABF) uncovered the cigarettes in April 2017 after intelligence led the officers to search a warehouse in Dandenong, where they found more than 4.8 million cigarettes illegally imported into Melbourne.

The cigarettes had a potential street value of $2.5 million with the total amount of duty evaded at about $2.9 million.

ABF Superintendent Targeted Operations, Leo Lahey, said the ABF works together with other agencies to disrupt the supply chain of illicit tobacco, from pre-border to post border.

“This outcome shows that there are serious consequences for those caught with illicit tobacco, where they are importing it or planning to sell it to the public.”

People with information about the illicit importation of tobacco should contact Border Watch by going to www.border.gov.au/borderwatch. By reporting suspicious activities, you help protect Australia’s border. Information can be provided anonymously.

Source: Commonwealth of Australia, represented by the Department of Immigration and Border Protection.