Customs Intelligence officer fears for his life

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LAHORE: An officer of Customs Intelligence faces threats to his life from smugglers while his superiors are reluctant to take strict action against the powerful mafia, Pakistan Today has learned.

According to details, the officer named Mian Yasin, who was handling an investigation against smugglers in 2014 in a tax evasion case registered with Customs Intelligence and Investigation Lahore Directorate. On August 17, 2014 a case was registered against Jamshed, Subhani brothers and others but the customs court issued arrest warrants against them on October 15, 2015.

Sources said that the accused smugglers used to replace high value goods with low value ones and caused a loss of Rs 250 million to the economy through tax evasion. They said that the smugglers had managed to replace goods from 200 containers.

Yasin has already survived two murder attempts. During one attempt, his son had been paralysed after smugglers had opened fire at him.

Sources said, “A case was registered with the police against the accused and the police, during the investigation, declared the accused guilty. The accused made a request to the DIG and in the meanwhile tried to murder the officer again in Sahiwal.” Sources added that another case was registered and the accused was again proven guilty during the course of investigations held by DSP Asif Ranjha.

Sources further said, “Because of the feeling of abandonment, the morale of the Customs Intelligence team has gone down and no officer dares to lay hand on smugglers.”

Yasin claimed that two former Customs Intelligence director generals, Lutaf Ullah Virk and Imtiaz Ahmad Khan, and Customs Intelligence Director Masood Imran supported him fully and requested the Lahore CCPO to ensure justice in his case. He said that the current Customs Intelligence Director General Shoukat Ali was not taking any interest in his case and had transferred him to Mardan.  Talking to Pakistan Today, Yasin said that the accused were still engaged in tax evasion.

“I have filed another case against the accused for hurling life threats,” he said, adding that the accused had asked him not to pursue the case against them.

He further said, “The accused are so influential that despite facing 24 cases including 12 of tax evasion and 12 of criminal nature, they are roaming freely.”

Pakistan Today tried to contact the Customs Intelligence DG for his comment on the matter but he did not respond.