Chattogram Customs House has filed five separate cases in connection with the seizing of five illegal consignments of liquor from Chattogram port and Narayanganj.
According to one of these case statements, smugglers allegedly hacked into the Chattogram Customs House's software system to clear their consignments without the knowledge of customs officials.
One of these cases was filed on 30 July and four cases were filed on 31 July at Bandar police station in the port city, said Saiful Haque, deputy commissioner of Chattogram Custom House's AIR (Audit Investigation and Research) branch.
Dong Jin Industrial (BD) Company Ltd in Uttara EPZ, Nilphamari, VIP industrial Bangladesh Pvt in Mongla EPZ, Bagerhat, BHK textile mill ltd in Ishwari EPZ, managing director, director, and senior officer of Hashy Tiger Company Limited in Cumilla EPZ, and clearing and forwarding (C&F) agent Zafar Ahmed's proprietor, and one staff member, have been made accused in those cases.
Jahedul Kabir, officer in charge of Bandar police station, said they have started investigating the cases, and those involved in these incidents will be brought to justice soon.
Customs authorities and RAB recovered two consignments of alcohol from Narayanganj on 23 July and three more consignments of contraband liquor another four days later. Smuggling rackets tried to evade Tk57.83 crore with these consignments.
Of the five consignments seized, two belonged to Dong Jin Industrial (BD) Company Ltd, and one each, to other companies.
In a case filed by Chattogram Customs House Revenue Officer Mahmudul Hasan, C&F Agent Zafar Ahmed, its official Jasim Riyad, and senior officials of Dong Jin Industrial (BD) Company Ltd Director, Chan Chi Wai Alfred, Chan Kwok Keung, Leung Pul Yee, and Chan Wai Shing Kevin, were accused.
According to the case statement, an organised gang hacked the revenue officer's ID and password to take delivery of the consignments.
Whenever a customs official tries to log into his computer at office, he receives a one-time password (OTP) to confirm that he himself is logging into the computer. But when the Dong Jin Industrial (BD) Company's consignments were cleared, no such OTP was sent to the concerned customs officials phone. The perpetrators hacked into the system and cleared their consignments, said sources at the Chattogram customs.
Meanwhile, regarding the case filed against VIP industrial Bangladesh Pvt, its Deputy General Manager Shahnewaz, said, "We have no involvement with this incident. A gang in connivance with a class of customs officials brought consignments of liquor using the name of our establishment."
Chattogram Customs House Commissioner Fakhrul Alam told The Business Standard, "Organised gangs are committing these crimes using fake user IDs and passwords to manipulate the ASYCUDA World system.
"The cooperation of the National Board of Revenue will be sought to form a task force comprising various agencies to identify those involved in this gang."