11 Mar 2013

Large consignment of smuggled whiskey prompts investigation in Samoa

8:17 pm on 11 March 2013

An investigation is underway in Samoa to find out who is involved in smuggling in a consignment of over 900 cartons of whiskey earmarked for local retailers.

Our correspondent in Apia says customs officials discovered the illegally imported whiskey had been brought in with duties and taxes of 200,000 Samoan tala or more than US$88,000 being paid.

Autagavaia Tipi Autagavaia says seven retailers have been found so far to have been selling the two particular whiskey brands found in the consignment that had false documentation.

He says police are now involved in trying to find the importer.

"The question of how the consignment was released and how much money was paid, that is something the investigation is dealing with, and I believe also that the investigation is also looking at the staff of the customs office, whether they have any involvement."

Autagavaia Tipi Autagavaia says the investigation should be completed within a week.