The Australian Border Force (ABF) has cancelled the licence of a NSW company linked to the movement of 832,000 undeclared cigarettes.
The company, QSL Freight Forwarding Pty Ltd, was licensed under s77G of the Customs Act 1901 to hold goods subject to Customs control at its depot in Mascot, NSW.
It had been operating for just nine weeks before ABF officers executed search warrants on Wednesday 10 August at four Sydney residential addresses in Bass Hill, Roselands and Chipping Norton. A further two search warrants were executed at the depot and at a licensed customs broker in Botany.
The warrants were in relation to an ongoing ABF investigation into the movement of cigarettes subject to Customs control without authority and without the payment of the substantial duty and GST that was due.
The ABF alleges that QSL Freight Forwarding Pty Ltd was involved in the movement of the 832,000 undeclared cigarettes, which were being held under Customs control at another licenced s77G depot, in order to deliberately defraud the revenue.
During the warrants, ABF officers served the director of QSL Freight Forwarding Pty Ltd with a Notice of Intended Cancellation and Suspension of the Customs Depot Licence pursuant to s 77V of the Customs Act 1901. This meant the depot licence was immediately suspended with full cancellation taking effect on Tuesday, 23 August 2016.
QSL Freight Forwarding Pty Ltd’s access to the Integrated Cargo System, which supports the movement and reporting of goods across the Australian border, has also been revoked.
The investigation resulted from an ABF air cargo examination team detection and a broader ABF intelligence informed operation focussed on identifying, targeting and investigating criminality within the cargo supply chain.