The Nigeria Customs Service, Federal Operations Unit, Zone C, Owerri, Imo State, on Friday said it seized nine exotic cars worth N162.1m between March and May, 2019.
The impounded vehicles included five 4matic Mercedes Benz cars, a Toyota Hilux, and four other vehicles.
The Customs Area Comptroller, Kayode Olusemire, stated that the 2010 4matic Mercedes Benz (GLK 350) was worth N7.3m while the 2017 Toyota Hilux was valued at N24.3m
He said, “The duty paid values of the 2013 model of the Mercedes Benz ML350 is N15.5m. The 2015 model of Ford Edge is worth N14.5m while the 2013 model of Range Rover (Evoque) is N14.8m. The 2011 4matic Mercedes Benz (E 350) is valued at N8.5m while the 2010 Toyota Venza is N5.5m.
“We also have 2010 4matic Mercedes Benz (GLK 350) with DPV of N7.3m and 2011 4matic Mercedes Benz (GLK 350) with DPV of N8.5m.”
Olusemire further stated that the vehicles were seized in Benin, Edo State, by men of the NCS in the zone, who acted on intelligence reports.
He further regretted that in spite of the campaigns by the Customs against smuggling, criminal elements were still bent on thwarting the economy of the nation by continuing with their illicit business.
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“It is pertinent to state at this point in time that what Nigerians should do is to help in revamping the dwindling nation’s economy by paying the necessary duty on such vehicles and other goods brought into the country, “Olusemire said.
The Customs boss urged Nigerians to seek useful information on how to buy vehicles and bring them into the country. Though noting that cars were not contraband goods, Olusemire frowned on the attitude of some wealthy Nigerians who want to drive exotic cars, but don’t want to pay duty.
“I therefore appeal to Nigerians to desist from buying and smuggling in such exotic cars that run into millions of naira without paying the commensurate duty on them.