Un-customed goods amounting to almost $20M in revenue have been seized in the month of January by the Guyana Revenue Authority (GRA) as the agency intensifies its fight against smuggling in and out of the country.
Under the Law Enforcement and Investigation Division (LEID) of the agency, the pursuit of smugglers has been ‘relentless’ and after acting on information received with the use of coordinated patrols, the multi-million dollar seizure was made possible, says the GRA.
According to a press release from the revenue authority, a number of vehicles which were used to transport the now seized items have been detained as well.
INews was told that the countrywide enforcement campaign has netted a quantity of frequently smuggled items, with the most notable items being foreign chicken and mosquito coils which have not been approved for use in Guyana.
It should be noted that for a number of these offences, the offenders have been identified for the first time. However, in some cases it has been noted that the perpetrators are repeat offenders, and as such in these cases the penalties are levied as payment triple the value of the duties.
GRA posited that it will continue to put systems in place so as to ensure its enforcement activities are enhanced.
Meanwhile, the effectiveness of this, however, is dependent on cooperation from the public as it relates to sharing information on incidents of corruption and illegal activities that are geared at depriving the state of revenue or results in unfair competition with the local manufacturing sector and legitimate importers.
“As such, persons with information can utilise various methods of providing information to the GRA,” the release added.