Customs seizes large haul of medical and protective gear

Customs seizes large haul of medical and protective gear

MUKDAHAN: Customs officials have seized millions of baht worth of smuggled face masks, thermometers and other protective gear from a transport firm in Muang district of this northeastern province.

Officials were sent to the company's premises on the Mukdahan-Nakhon Phanom bypass road in Muang district on Friday following a tip-off that many untaxed face masks and other products were stored there, said Sirichai Khunabut, director of the Customs Office Region 2.

A total of 1,893 cardboard boxes had been placed in front of the firm for sorting.

The boxes contained 2,500 infrared thermometers, 800 mercury thermometers made in China, and 12,500 face masks made in Vietnam along with other protective gear. All the items were untaxed, Mr Sirichai said at a briefing yesterday.

An investigation found the products had been smuggled from China and Vietnam via Laos and across the Mekong River into Thailand. None of the shipments went through customs procedures. All the products were seized and handed over to the Mukdahan customs office.

Demand for face masks has been high along with alcohol and other products amid the Covid-19 pandemic which has led to hoarding, profiteering and smuggling.

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