Chattogram Custom House has sued a Dhaka based importer--Siam Enterprise and an agent-- Khan Enterprise for forging a clearance permit (CP) by opening a fake website of the commerce ministry.
Sujay Debnath, assistant revenue officer of the Chattagram Custom House filed the case on Thursday with Bandar Police Station under the Digital Security Act 2018, the custom house Commissioner Mohammad Fakhrul Alam told The Business Standard today.
Siam Enterprise owner Md Jalil and Khan Enterprise owner Golam Moula were accused in the case, Md Nizam Uddin, officer-in-charge of Bandar Police Station, told our correspondent confirming the matter.
Sources from the Custom House said Siam Enterprise of Dhaka had declared the import of 13,520 kilograms of olives and peanuts from Malaysia. But instead they brought in 21,060 kilograms of baby food from Nestle Company.
To release the goods from Chattogram port, the C&F agent, Khan Enterprise, submitted a bill of entry to the Custom House on 23 April.
The customs officials had received prior intelligence that the consignment contained non-declared goods. They conducted a physical examination at the port yard and identified the forgery.
Chattogram Custom House Commissioner, Mohammad Fakhrul Alam, imposed a fine of Tk76 lakh on the importer for providing false declaration in the invoice and for not complying with the terms of the import policy.
He approved the release of the consignment subject to submission of a clearance permit from the Ministry of Commerce, or the Office of the Chief Controller of Imports and Exports.
Later, on 10 October, importer, Siam Enterprise, submitted a commerce ministry permit to the Custom House. On 13 October, it submitted another letter from the Ministry of Commerce regarding the clearance permit.
Both letters recommended the release of the consignment, subject to payment of duties and penalties as determined by the Customs Commissioner.
But the customs officials were suspicious. So, after calling the deputy secretary of the Ministry of Commerce to verify, they received confirmation that the clearance permit submitted to the Custom House was fake.
The website www.mincomgov.com that was opened was strikingly similar to the official commerce ministry website www.mincom.gov.bd.
According to Customs sources, Nestle milk may only be imported by their authorised dealers.
The import policy states that baby food packets must bear the words, "There is no substitute for breast milk." The powdered milk packet did not bear this inscription.