53,760 narcotic pills, 5.5 million parcels of paan seized in Dubai

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Paan
The paan packets that were seized
Image Credit: Supplied

Dubai: Around 53,760 narcotic pills packed in 32 boxes and 5.5 million parcels of narcotic paan (chewing tobacco) hidden in 92,400 boxes were among the prohibited goods seized by Jebel Ali Customs Centre in the past eight months.

Jebel Ali Customs Centre, which is part of Dubai Customs’ Sea Customs Centres Management, has thwarted 103 smuggling attempts from January to August this year. A total of 104,074 inspection operations were conducted and 144,025 containers were scanned during this period. Some of the prohibited items seized included 33,930 kg of sandalwood. The illegal trade of sandalwood is in violation of CITES (Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora).

Yousef Al Hashmi, Director of Sea Customs Centers Management, said: “We developed our inspection systems to ensure best effective ways of thwarting smuggling of prohibited goods. At Jebel Ali Customs Centre, we have six advanced container scanning systems that can handle 900 containers per hour. The system alerts inspectors for any suspicious shipments through identifying density of materials inside the container. Aided by the K9 Sniffing Dogs Unit, the highly professional and skilled inspectors can easily recognize and detect any prohibited materials.”

Ahmed Al Jamri, Senior Inspection Manager at Jebel Ali Customs Center, added: “Although COVID-19 is challenging, we work hard to ensure safe and streamlined inspection operations. We are up to it and we are capable of protecting our society from the hazards of illegitimate goods, and for this we provide our inspection officers with the latest tools and technologies and advanced training so that they can handle their work in different conditions.”

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