Taiwan's Coast Guard Administration (CGA) searched a fishing boat in Keelung on Sunday where they discovered around 222,000 packs of smuggled cigarettes with a street value of NT$14 million (US$505,105).
The boat was searched by authorities after it entered Badouzi Fishing Port at around 6 a.m.
The search uncovered 444 boxes, each containing 500 packs of cigarettes, with an estimated 222,000 packs carrying the " Burton" and "Modeng" brand names, according to the CGA's investigation branch in Taipei.
The seized cigarettes were found in a hidden storage area on the boat, the CGA said.
Keelung City government impounded the cigarettes, while Chang and the crew will be investigated and prosecuted by the city's district prosecutors office for breaching the Tobacco and Alcohol Administration Act.
A CGA official said the agency's investigation branch in Taipei received a tip-off that the New Taipei Shen'Ao-registered fishing boat left Badouzi Fishing Port on Friday, with its captain, surnamed Chang (?), and five Vietnamese migrant fishermen on board, to pick up the cigarettes and smuggle them into Taiwan.
Meanwhile, the CGA sent Chang and the crew to the Ministry of Health and Welfare's Keelung Hospital to undergo PCR testing for COVID-19, where they were found to be negative.
Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel