DRI dismantles iPhone traffic; 3,646 iPhone-13 mobile phones seized

The Tax Intelligence Directorate (DRI) has caught a stockpile of iPhones smuggled into the country.

After developing precise information, agents from the Tax Intelligence Directorate (DRI) inspected two shipments on November 26, 2021.

The shipments arrived from Hong Kong at the Air Cargo Complex (ACC) at Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport in Mumbai, the finance ministry said in a statement.

In the import documents, the goods were declared as “memory cards”. Physical examination, however, revealed that the shipments actually contained 2,245 iPhone 13 Pro numbers, 1,401 iPhone 13 Pro Max numbers, 12 Google Pixel 6 Pro numbers, and 1 Apple Smart Watch.

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“Thus, a total of 3,646 (three thousand six hundred and forty-six) iPhone-13 cell phones were found in the intercepted shipments,” the ministry said.

The recovered cell phones and the Apple smartwatch, which were not declared, were seized under the 1962 customs law.

The total value of the seized goods is approximately Rs. 42.86 crore while the declared value of the goods was only Rs. 80 lakh.

The iPhone 13 models went on sale in India from September 2021, with a base price of Rs. 70,000 and some of the higher end models costing up to Rs. 1,80,000.

Importing mobile phones into India results in effective tariffs of around 44%.

The detection of attempted smuggling of such high-end phones of the latest models in such numbers shows how quickly smugglers are establishing their smuggling networks for the latest products, like the iPhone 13.

This detection uncovered serious import fraud, strengthening DRI’s ability to detect and combat unique and sophisticated contraband methods, with substantial revenue implications.

As the guardian of the country’s economic borders, DRI remains committed to combating smuggling.

About Anne Wurtsbach

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