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TRH Evaded BAVIC’s Regulations For Clearing Container …Defense 5th Witness Claims

By Grace Q. Bryant
The president of the Customs Broker Association of Liberia, James Hinneh, testified that the National Port Authority (NPA) did not issue TRH Trading any import permit declaration to clear the cocaine container from the Free Port of Monrovia, surprisingly the container left the port without being searched.
The Defense fifth witness said the cocaine container did not follow the BAVIC regulation because it did not attach its permit prior to the clearing of the container by TRH.
According to Hinneh, the report was to confirm that the container is free of dangerous substances and added that the TRH trading also violated the customs regulation when shipping the container in the country.
”There was no Impact Permit Declaration (IPD) or the Import Notification Form (INF), the key security instruments obtained by TRH to cleared the contained,” he testified.
He further testified that the Ministry of Commerce approves the notification form and the permit declaration for a consignment who meets the shipment requirement, but with the case of the container in question, he did not see any documents within the APM Terminal’s Asycuda System indicating that the Ministry approved TRH’s shipment of the container.
He noted that customs brokers are only allowed to review documents from the Asycuda System that carry the name of a customer and they were denied access to have printed copies of the shipment documents.
”I saw TRH’s customs breach in the Asycuda System when I asked to view the company’s documentation,” he explained.
Besides, the Ministry, the defense Witness said, BAVIC’s report of declaration must be attached to the permit or the notification form, indicating that the consignment is free of any dangerous substances, but for the TRH’s container, it did not follow the BAVIC processes.
Witness Hinneh said Global Maritime Tracking Solution certificate recommended to both the Liberia Revenue Authority and the APM Terminals for physical examination to be conducted on the TRH’S contained thereby testifying that, “No physical examination was conducted on said consignment.”
According to the witness, other documents included in the bill of landing of TRH showed that pork and chicken feet were the consignment but “It was later discovered that unwanted substances were found in the container as well,” he told the court and jurors.
”While we were trying to find out who put the unwanted substances in the container, we were certain that the import was made by TRH, in cognizant of the process and procedures of importation. We were surprised to have noticed TRH’s breach in the normal clearing procedure of said consignment,” he explained.
According to him, the Bill of Landing is the only instrument that showed ownership of importation. But the bill of landing document showed that the consignment was imported by TRH.

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