The US $2 Million which was seized in a container at the Point Lisas Port during a joint police and Customs exercise in November 2016 has been ordered to be forfeited to the state. The money which was traced to Tortola, during the course of the joint police and Customs investigation was found concealed between plywood inside the container , which was supposed to be cleared by a local businessman.
Up to yesterday, no charge was laid against the businessman for smuggling the cash into this country.
When the money was seized it was transported to the Customs and Excise building and placed in a vault. The money was transferred to a vault at the Central Bank following information that criminals were planning a heist on the Customs building.
In a release, the Customs and Excise Division revealed that Comptroller of Customs and Excise Glen Singh applied to the Magistrate’s Court for an order that the seized cash be forfeited to the State. Customs and Excise was represented by State Counsel Shirley Sheppard and on hearing the evidence given by officers in the seizure, Couva magistrate Siumongal Ramsaran granted the order after being satisfied that conditions of the forfeiture were fulfilled in accordance with the Proceeds of Crime Act.