Customs stopped 3,000 attempts to smuggle sanctioned goods in 2022

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In 2022, the Customs Office of the State Revenue Service (VID) identified 3,000 cases of the transfer of goods subject to sanctions across the border, the Deputy Director General of the VID, Director of the Customs Office Raimonds Zukuls, told Latvian Television on January 26.

“Last year, there was more control of goods subject to sanctions. Following Russian aggression in Ukraine, the ninth sanctions package has now been adopted and customs is one of the services actively engaged in and controlled, preventing goods from entering Russia and Belarus, as well as Russian and Belarusian goods entering the European Union,” Zukuls said.

As regards the transfer of goods subject to sanctions in 2022, a total of approximately 3,000 infringements have been identified. It mostly concerns imports into the European Union of goods, mostly wood and metal products, and various devices.

The reason in some cases could be a lack of awareness among businesses when the current sanctions package comes into force, said Zukuls. “But if we see the same thing, trying to swap the commodity code for the second time, or, for example, we find two sets of documents in a car, one of which is not to Russia, but the other to Russia, then we can talk about deliberate action,” he said.

In addition, there is a range of goods that are also prohibited for private persons to transport cross-border.

Some 17 million smuggling cigarettes have been detected under the control of excise duties, which is less than a year earlier. However, the number of transfers has been higher, which means that smaller volumes are frequently attempted.

27,000 counterfeit goods have been detected in 2022, of which 20,000 were counterfeit toys.

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