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Thousands of cigars seized in huge smuggling case
  • | | March 21, 2017 11:43 AM
The anti-smuggling police, the General Department of Customs and relevant agencies at Hanoi's Noi Bai Airport have seized nearly 17,000 illegally imported cigars from Cuba.


Nearly 17,000 cigars seized at Noi Bai International Airport on March 19.

On March 19, employees of the General Department of Customs collaborated with other agencies to inspect luggage of four Vietnamese passengers at Noi Bai International Airport after they had taken a transit flight via Charles de Gaulle Airport in France from Cuba.

They found various kinds of cigars including Cohiba, Cohiba Siglo VI, Hoyo De Monterey Epicure and Cohiba Robustos. There is also a huge number of unknown cigars wrapped in nylon or paper. The police seized a total of 16,996 cigars.

Passenger Nguyen Thi Thuy and Vu Duc Viet carried 4,566 and 3,410 cigars. Pham Tran Lien and Bui Duc Dung carried 3,190 and 5,840 cigars respectively.

According to Resolution 13 on luggage allowances, gifts and duty-free samples, passengers are only allowed to bring a maximum of 100 cigars into Vietnam. However, passengers may be allowed to bring in only 20 cigars after the Ministry of Finance makes revisions to tighten management on alcohol, cigars and cigarettes.

Passengers who bring more than 1.5 litres of alcohol at 20 degrees or more, over 20 cigars, 200 cigarettes or 250 grammes of tobacco or over VND10m worth of assets, must declare to the customs.

Vietnam Trade Information Centre said the statistics for imported cigar were inaccurate because most of the cigars sold in Vietnam were brought in as private luggage. More people in Vietnam are becoming interested in cigars, but lack experiences to distinguish fake and high-quality cigars.

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