Mozambique: Contraband Cigarettes and Alcohol Seized in Tete

Maputo — The Mozambican Tax Authority (AT) announced on Thursday that mobile customs brigades in the western province of Tete have seized about 1,450 boxes of contraband cigarettes and 668 bottles of assorted alcoholic drinks.

The bottles were seized during a customs inspection at the Mpadwe Inter-provincial Road Terminal in Tete city. The transporter in question was unloading passengers and goods, and the customs brigade found that most of the alcoholic drinks he was carrying were contraband. Only ten bottles carried the legally necessary fiscal stamp.

The cigarettes were seized at Cassacatiza, on the border between Tete and Zambia. According to the AT press release, the cigarettes were in a containerised truck driven by a Zimbabwean citizen , who falsely declared that they were goods in transit.

Carlos Viagem, the head of the Mobile Brigades, said these seizures were possible because customs inspection of merchandise has been boosted in Tete province. Citizens guilty of this type of contraband will not only be fined, but risk losing the merchandise and the truck used to transport it.

The smugglers in these two instances would have deprived the Mozambican state of 18 million meticais (about 257,000 US dollars) in customs duties and other taxes.

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