Four Sri Lankans had been arrested by customs officers at the BIA this morning while they were attempting to smuggle cigarettes worth Rs.4.6 million into the country.
Customs Director and Media Spokesman Dharmasena Kahandawa said the contraband was brought to country and that the men had arrived from Doha on Flight QR 668.
Investigations had revealed that they were carrying four travelling bags containing 663 cartons of cigarettes.
“The men, who were residents of Matale had said that they had been employed abroad for several years,” Mr. Kahandawa said.
The contraband valued at Rs.4,641,000 consisted 132,000 ‘Tops’ brand cigarettes in cartons, was detected while the men were on the verge of walking out of the ‘nothing to declare’ green channel.
The investigations were carried out by Customs officers Nirosh Kavirathna, Lasath Dharmasena, Mihiraj Abdullah, Dammika Gamage, Chamara Thilakaratna and Sachintha Kaluaggala under the directions of Deputy Customs Director Asanga Hapugaskumbura. The cigarettes were confiscated and the suspects released after being fined Rs.150,000. (Chaturanga Pradeep)