ADDIS ABABA – Contraband goods valued at 95.8 million birr have been seized across last week, said Ethiopia Customs Commission (ECC).
Unlike most of the previous weeks, customs police have prevented more goods from leaving the country illegally during their week-long crackdown on contraband trade.
Customs police apprehended items valued more than 51.9 million birr while they were being smuggled out of Ethiopia, the ECC said in a statement on Monday.
In the same period, about 43.5 million birr worth of goods have also been captured when they were smuggled into the country.
Gold, Clothes, Coffee, cosmetics, electronics, weapons, clothes, drugs, and foreign currencies dominated CEE’s list of seized contraband goods.
According to the Commission, its branches at Jigjiga, Dire Dawa, and Hawassa could intercept the highest amount of the contraband items, seizing goods valued at 13.9 million birr, 11.8 million birr and 6.5 million birr, respectively.
At least two suspects are in police custody in connection with contraband trade, said the Commission.
The collaborative work between customs officers, regional and federal police with the help of the public have significantly contributed in the fight against illegal trade, its officials said.
In the first four months of the current fiscal year, the Commission managed to seize contraband items worth 1.46 billion Birr, and arrested at least 293 suspected smugglers.