Recently, Australian Customs and Border Protection staff celebrated the one millionth x-ray of a sea cargo container arriving in Australia. Staff witnessed the x-ray and unpacking of a recent seizure of 16.8 tonnes of illicit loose tobacco, worth almost $8 million in foregone duties and GST. The sea cargo container arrived from Indonesia and was selected for further examination based on anomalies detected during an x-ray at the Container Examination Facility (CEF) in Melbourne.
Container Examination Facilities across Australia, have been instrumental in many major seizures of illegal or prohibited items. In the last 13 months CEFs have detected:
- 448 kilograms of heroin and opium
- 396 kilograms of cocaine
- 174 kilograms of amphetamines and chemical precursors
- 82 million cigarette sticks
- 258 tonnes of tobacco
Since the first Container Examination Facility was opened in November 2002, Customs and Border Protection has x-rayed one million containers at key ports around Australia including Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane and Fremantle. Prior to the first facility opening, about 4,000 containers were examined each year. Today, Customs officers x-ray more than 101,500 containers each year. That’s a huge increase in physical assessments.
The facilities at Australian ports have container x-ray machines capable of x-raying up to four sea cargo containers at a single time. Source: Ministry of Home Affairs, Australia.
Comment: All I can say is this is an amazing feat! Africa truly has a long way to go.