R16m Worth Of Illicit Cigarettes Recovered in SA After Being Smuggled From Zimbabwe As Bananas
According to reports reaching iHarare desks, R16m worth of illicit cigarettes which were smuggled from Zimbabwe as bananas were recovered recently in South Africa.
The contraband of Remington Gold which is estimated to be worth R16m is alleged to have been seized at Limpopo after it was cleared from the Zimbabwean side as bananas
The development was confirmed by LeadSA Social activist Yusuf Abramjee on Twitter;
Over R16m of illicit cigarettes seized in Limpopo. The load of Remington Gold was smuggled in from Zimbabwe. The driver abandoned the load & R50 000 cash was also found hidden in the truck. The load was cleared on the Zim side as bananas. @SANDFCorpEvents @sarstax @TaxJustice_SA pic.twitter.com/E4AbOyvYLA
— Yusuf Abramjee (@Abramjee) February 24, 2021
According to Yusuf Abramjee, the truck carrying the load of Remington Gold was found abandoned in Limpopo. R50 000 cash was also found hidden inside the truck.
Recently, a 25-year-old Zimbabwean man has been fined R40 000 by a Polokwane Magistrate Court for smuggling 330 cartons of Remmington Gold Cigarettes worth R87 000 into South Africa.
Walter Madhongi was arrested by South Africa’s specialized crime unit, the Hawks, after a tip-off.
The smuggling of cigarettes between Zimbabwe and South Africa through the Beitbridge Border Post and illegal crossing points are quite common.
Most of the brands smuggled from Zimbabwe to the neighboring country include; Pacific, Remmington gold, Kingsgate, Madison, Mega, Dullahs, Branson, and Servilles.
Over 30 percent of cigarettes on the South African market are suspected to have been smuggled from Zimbabwe.
The repressive customs laws in the neighboring country which make it difficult for Zimbabweans to export cigarettes to the neighboring country is what is prompting the smuggling of illicit cigarettes into SA