What a Customs Offence Charge Means
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What is a customs offence?
Customs offences are dealt with under the Customs Act 1901. The main offences you may be charge with under the legislation are:
Under section 233(1)(a) of the Act, the smuggling of goods is prohibited. Depending on the Court determination, the maximum penalty is not exceeding 200 penalty units, an equivalent of $44,000.
2.Importing/ exporting prohibited goods
Section 233(1)(b) and (c) of the Act deals with the prohibition of importing/ exporting goods. In breaching the importing/ exporting regulations, the Court will consider the nature of the goods and prescribe penalties accordingly. Generally, the penalty will not exceed 200 penalty units, an equivalent of $44,000.
3. Evasion of duty
Section 234(1) of the Act prohibits the evasion of payable duty. Penalties for this offence depend on whether the duty can be determined. Again, the general penalty will not exceed 200 penalty units, an equivalent of $44,000. If you are found to have intentionally misled an officer, you may also be liable to a maximum fine of 100 penalty units, an equivalent of $22,200.
Options when charged with a customs offence
Subject to your circumstances, you may choose either to:
- Plead guilty – Admit to committing the offence and breaking the law
- Plead not guilty – Deny committing the offence and breaking the law
If you decide to plead not guilty, our experienced criminal lawyers will vehemently protect your rights so that you get the best possible defence.
The best way to get off a customs offence charge is to contact our experienced criminal lawyers. Our solicitors at the Australian Legal Practice have extensive experience and specialise in criminal offences. We provide tailored advice and are armed with the right knowledge to fight your case.
If your matter is urgent, call (02) 8084 9929 today to arrange a free initial consultation.
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