Customs officials in Kandal province yesterday sent a sample of Vietnamese-produced rice for examination after authorities on Monday confiscated a truck loaded with about 4 tonnes of the rice and other goods suspected of being imported without paying taxes.
Sam Oeun, forensic expert at the Kandal provincial customs department, yesterday said they will press charges if the rice was found to have skirted duties. “We have yet to confirm what variety of rice it is and whether it affects consumer health,” he said.
According to Chun Vanny, Kandal Stung district military police commander, the 80 50-kilogram bags of rice confiscated on Monday bore a buffalo rider logo and Vietnamese text.
“The rice was hidden in the van with several other goods: seat cushions, blankets, mosquito nets, pillows and bolsters, each numbering 100. One hundred mattress sheets were also discovered on top of the vehicle,” Vanny said.
The vehicle and goods were impounded at Kandal Stung district military police base, where purported owner Chan Raksa, 47, arrived to claim the goods but was denied as he lacked legal proof of importation.
“That man said that those goods were imported for sale in Kampong Speu province, but claimed that he left the legal import documents at home,” Vanny said.
Oeun said that Camcontrol experts were investigating the case and would fine him accordingly if the goods were illegally imported.