Excise busts illicit fag selling racket at BMICH

Published : 9:15 am  April 12, 2018 | No comments so far |  | 


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Ex-serviceman nabbed with smuggled cigarettes

Untitled-10By Kurulu Koojana Kariyakarawana

In a shocking revelation, the Colombo Excise Station officials busted an illicit cigarettes selling racket inside the Bandaranaike Memorial International Conference Hall (BMICH) premises by an ex-serviceman, who is employed there.

The Excise Sleuths on information carried out the detection at the BMICH on Tuesday and arrested an ex-serviceman, who was said to have sold the illegal cigarettes within the premises.

The ex-serviceman was amongst many other forces personnel, who are employed as the staff of the BMICH entrusted with various responsibilities related to many activities and programmes taking place every day.

In addition to the tasks given to him the said employee had earned an extra income by selling an illegally smuggled brand of ‘Gold Leaf’ amongst the staff at a cheaper rate, without the knowledge of his superiors.

The Excise sleuths found 422 sticks of this foreign brand of cigarettes, which is banned under Customs Regulations.

According to Excise sources, the suspect had been engaged in the racket over six months and the preliminary investigations had revealed that he had been receiving the contraband from another serviceman, who is not employed there.


No kiosks are located in the vicinity of the conference hall …

Since a large number of persons work in the staff of the BMICH and a considerable number of them being smokers, the racket had operated under the nose of the authorities with no hindrance.

“Not to mention the practical difficulties for the staff to come out for a puff of smoke amidst duties, where no kiosks are located in the vicinity of the conference hall to buy a cigarette,” an official said.

The employee was imposed a fine of Rs.104, 000 and the contraband was confiscated.

Excise Inspector Chinthaka Udapamunuwa conducted the raid on the instructions of Assistant Excise Commissioner (Western Province) B. A. Dayaratne, Colombo Excise Superintendent Vijitha Gamanayake and OIC Colombo Excise Station Chanaka Nanayakkara.