23 travellers caught at Changi Airport for failure to pay taxes, not declaring cash above $20k
A 46-year-old foreigner was found on Wednesday (Dec 15) to be in possession of undeclared Singapore and foreign currencies totalling $31,023.
He was among 23 travellers who arrived at Changi Airport that day and were hauled up for failing to declare cash of more than $20,000, or failing to pay taxes on cigarettes, liquor and other items.
The police, Immigration and Checkpoints Authority and Singapore Customs said on Friday (Dec 17) that the travellers were caught following a seven-hour operation at Terminals 1 and 3.
The agencies added that they will be conducting more operations with the easing of travel restrictions.
"All travellers are reminded that the authorities will not tolerate any illegal activities as we strive to safeguard our land, air and sea borders against crime and security threats, including smuggling activities and non-compliance with our regulations," they said.
The 23 travellers detained include a 57-year-old foreigner who failed to declare the $25,000 of Singapore and foreign currencies he had on him.
Another 21 people did not declare and pay taxes on cigarettes or tobacco products and liquor in excess of their duty-free allowance, as well as new articles, souvenirs, gifts and food items exceeding their goods and services tax (GST) relief allowance.
The agencies reminded members of the public that they are required to declare the physical movement of any currency or bearer negotiable instruments, which include cheques, money orders and bearer bonds, into or out of Singapore if the total value exceeds $20,000, or its equivalent in foreign currency.
Failing to do so could result in a fine of up to $50,000, a jail term of up to three years, or both.
Those convicted of evading any Customs or excise duty can be fined up to 20 times the amount of duty and GST evaded.
Travellers or returning Singaporeans are encouraged to make an advance declaration and payment for their dutiable or GST goods up to three days before they arrive here at this website.