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Customs Court dismisses application for transfer of  case to NAB Court against M.M Trading Co
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Customs Court dismisses application for transfer of case to NAB Court against M.M Trading Co

KARACHI: The Customs Court dismissed the application filed by National Accountability Bureau (NAB) seeking transfer of case from customs court to NAB court against M/s M.M Trading Co and others, who were booked in a case of attempting to evade duties and taxes on the tune of Rs40,097,627.

On 18 January 2020, after the hearing, court passed order that “there are certain basic objects in the regulation of the customs act, 1969. First, it is source of revenue, second an import tax may serve as a means of protecting the goods of home industries against foreign competitors. Customs act, 1969 is a special status whereas NAB Ordinance promulgated in the year 1999. There is no provision available under the ordinance 1991 which derogates customs court from exercising its exclusive jurisdiction to try the offence under the customs act, 1969, preventive of smuggling and allied taxation status.

The instant case falls under the provisions of the customs act, 1969 of mis-declaration, etc., for the subject consignment with the customs authority in the customs matter at the stage of import. None of the allegation in the instant case is of corruption, corrupt practice, misuse of power, misappropriation of property and matter contacted thereto under the ordinance, 1999. For foregoing reasons and in view of the amendment (Ordinance no XXVII of 2019) dated Dec 28, 2019 amending NAB Ordinance 1999 application in hand is dismissed accordingly”.

Earlier, counsel for NAB officials had moved an application under section 16 (A) of the NAB Ordinance 1999 by Chairman NAB for transfer of the instant case from this court to the court created under Ordinance 1999.

According to the first information report (FIR) registered by custom officials, an information was received that the above mentioned importer and others have imported a consignment declared to contain secondhand clothing (men’s wear ladies wear child wear HHR blankets) weighing 23400 kilograms declared to have been shipped from United Kingdom for clearance thereof through their authorized customs clearing agents M/s Ali Co.

Customs officials examined such consignment and found 100 percent polyester gents suiting fabric, cylinder liner for diesel engine different parts, cylinder liner for diesel engine parts, Honda genuine parts, brake shoe, rubber v-belt, men shoes, ladies heel sandals, Mitsubishi genuine vehicles body parts, packing material, mobile phones of different models and design/ origins, platinum chromium coronary stent system, LG DVD player, MQB Matsuno plastic beads and other goods.

He investigation officer had informed the court that importers declared value of goods supported with a fake import invoice and fake documents, consignment’ value ascertained as US$ 720,699 contrary to as declared by the importer $8,424 and total taxes are worked out as Rs40, 097, 627. The magnitude of mis-declaration of value comes to 8455 percent, the importer and his clearing agent attempted clearance of the impugned goods by mis-declaring the descriptions of the goods, quantities and value by submitting/ filing fake import documents with intention to defraud the government/ legitimate revenue.

Case was registered against Qaiser Abbas, clearing agent of M/s Ali Co and others for violation of section 2 (s) 16, 32, 32  A, 32C, 79(1) of the customs act, 1969 and other related laws.