DRI busts iPhone smuggling racket at Mumbai airport, seizes over 3,600 phones

Asia's Tech News Daily

DRI busts iPhone smuggling racket at Mumbai airport, seizes over 3,600 phones

The Mumbai unit of the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) on Sunday busted an Apple iPhone smuggling racket at the Mumbai International Airport. The DRI seized a consignment of 3,646 of the latest models of iPhones at the Air Cargo Complex (ACC) at the airport.

The iPhones are suspected to be smuggled into the country from Hong Kong. The items were imported as ‘memory chips’ to evade customs duty.

The consignments contained 2,245 handsets of iPhone 13 Pro, 1,401 handsets of iPhone 13 Pro Max, 12 handsets of Google Pixel 6 pro and one Apple smartwatch.

“The above-mentioned mobile phones and apple smartwatch, not having been declared, were seized under the Customs Act, 1962. The total value of the seized goods is around Rs 42.86 crore, while the declared value of the goods was only Rs 80 lakhs,” said the agency.

iPhone 13 models went for sale in India from September onwards, with a base price of Rs 70,000 and some of the higher-end models costing up to Rs 1,80,000. Import of mobile phones into India attracts effective customs duty of around 44 per cent.

“The detection of attempted smuggling of these high-end phones of latest models in such large numbers shows how quickly the smugglers establish their smuggling networks for the latest products, like iPhone 13,” said the agency.

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