Customs intercept 150 kilos of Cannabis, automatic pistol and €36,210
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It has been a busy Christmas weekend for Malta Customs, having so far intercepted 150 kilos of Cannabis, an automatic pistol, €36,210, 48 kilos of undeclared shisha and a Georgian national has been taken to court accused of importing 20,000 fake euro notes.
On Christmas Eve, while checking vehicles arriving from Pozzallo by MV Jean De La Valette, Customs Officers stopped a vehicle for a routine check control.
Customs said that the driver, a 42 year old Maltese from Msida, was asked if he had anything to declare, he replied that he had a few alcohol bottles for personal use and some toys for his children.
However, Customs said that during a vehicle search, suspicious plastic bales were noted containing what duty officer suspected were Cannabis grass.
The Customs Officers immediately called in Police from the Rapid Intervention Unit and the Anti Drug Squad.
A joint Customs/Police vehicle search was then made at the Police Head Quarters. During this search they found · 0 plastic bales containing 150 kilos cannabis grass; 1 Beretta .25cl automatic pistol ser. No. BER57111V with 1 magazine containing 8 bullets; and undeclared €36,210 in cash.
All items, together with the vehicle, were withheld for further investigation. The driver is expected to be arraigned in court in the next hours, Customs said.
Also on Christmas Eve, Customs Officers stopped a VW Touran driven by a 31 year old Syrian national. Asked if he had anything to declare he replied in the negative though a number of bags containing water pipe tobacco were clearly visible.
Customs said that in fact, 48 kilos of `AL FAKHER’ Shisha Water Pipe Tobacco were found in his vehicle. The items and the vehicle were retained by Customs and the passenger is expected to be arraigned in court.
Then on Saturday Customs Officers at MIA, clearing passengers just arriving from Istanbul, stopped a Georgian national, who was passing through the “nothing to declare” channel, and did a luggage scan.
Customs said that the the 64 year old passenger was smuggling into the country 100 fake euro notes in 200 euro denomination totalling 20,000 euro.
Police from Economic Crimes Unit were informed and the passenger was taken to court and given a suspended jail sentence.