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Custom Act Amendment: Accused will have to provide source of income or face property forfeitures

Islamabad: Under the Finance Bill 2020, the government has decided to amend Section 187 of the Customs Act 1969 and make it mandatory for the accused (under its stipulations) to provide their sources of income or face property forfeitures. To this effect, The taxation agency has already begun formulating the rules for its implementation.

Finance Bill has also prescribed new punishments for violations under the Customs Act. In case of currency,  gold, or gems worth more than USD 100,000 the punishment will be fine that is 5 times the value of smuggled property and 14 years of incarceration. Smugglers may also face forfeiture of property if they cannot establish a source of income for their property as separate from the crime they are accused of under Customs Act.

In case of the smuggled currency, gold or gems are valued between PKR 1.5 million and PKR 3 million, the fine will be the same amount as the value of smuggled property with 2 years of imprisonment. In case the value of smuggled property falls between PKR 3 million and 5 million, the punishment will be a fine for double the value and 5 year imprisonment. In case of property worth between PKR 5 million and 7.5 million, the punishment will be 3 times the fine and 5 year imprisonment. In case of smuggled property valued between PKR 7.5 million and PKR 10 million, the punishment will be 4 times the fine and 5 year imprisonment. In case of property valued higher than PKR 10 million, the punishment will be 5 times the fine and 5-year imprisonment.

Finance Bill has also prescribed new punishments for violations under the Customs Act. In case of currency, gold, or gems worth more than USD 100,000 the punishment will be fine that is 5 times the value of smuggled property and 14 years of incarceration. Smugglers may also face forfeiture of property if they cannot establish a source of income for their property as separate from the crime they are accused of under Customs Act.

In case of the smuggled currency, gold or gems are valued between PKR 1.5 million and PKR 3 million, the fine will be the same amount as the value of smuggled property with 2 years of imprisonment. In case the value of smuggled property falls between PKR 3 million and 5 million, the punishment will be a fine for double the value and 5 year imprisonment. In case of property worth between PKR 5 million and 7.5 million, the punishment will be 3 times the fine and 5 year imprisonment. In case of smuggled property valued between PKR 7.5 million and PKR 10 million, the punishment will be 4 times the fine and 5 year imprisonment. In case of property valued higher than PKR 10 million, the punishment will be 5 times the fine and 5-year imprisonment.

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