The Royal Customs and Excise Department (RCED) through its Law Enforcement Division and an enforcement agency foiled an attempt to smuggle subsidised petrol to a neighbouring country and detained 23 individuals aged 25 to 48, including 13 locals during a joint operation recently.
The operation targetted two locations in Serasa on March 25 and uncovered over 41,000 litres of diesel, a tugboat from a neighbouring country and a lorry carrying plastic tanks containing the smuggled fuel, according to the department.
The evidence was seized and the suspects were brought to the law enforcement office for investigation.
Those guilty will be fined between BND10,000 and BND50,000 as well as imprisonment of no more than three years or both.
Meanwhile, those committing second and subsequent offences will be fined between BND10,000 and BND500,000 as well as imprisonment of at least six months and not more than five years or both.
RCED advised the public to avoid being involved in smuggling activities and reminded that the possession of contraband is an offence under Section 146 of Excise Order 2006. The public with information of smuggling offences can contact the department at 8714422 or 8721422 or visit any customs office.