Smuggling of alcohol in Ukraine should be criminalized – lawyer

Контрабанда алкоголя в Украине должна быть криминализирована - юрист

The boundary is the place of profit and smuggling. At the same time, in Ukraine the criminal liability is not provided for all goods illegally moved across the customs border outside of customs control or in secret. About it in a newspaper column written by the candidate of legal Sciences, lawyer Andrew Kostyra, reports.

According to him, more severe penalties for smuggling will be a tool to prevent illegal schemes of export from Ukraine “wood” that when crossing the border with the EU turning into “logs.”

Also, as noted Kostyra criminalization of smuggling of alcohol and tobacco not only affect the budget revenues, but will reduce the level of this illegal business.

“… because the presence of only administrative responsibility is not a significant risk for the smugglers. In addition, in the case of increasing the punishment of economic support will be provided to national manufacturers of alcohol”, – he wrote.

The results of the audit by PricewaterhouseCoopers, thanks to the “black market” the budget of Ukraine does not receive more than 12 billion a year, said the lawyer. And according to the International monetary Fund, the illegal production of alcohol in Ukraine is about 60% of the total market, whereas in other countries – not more than 25%.

“About half of the state distilleries produce illegal alcohol, and 10 of the 30 involved in the production of counterfeit products,” – said Kostyra.

According to him, in most countries, smuggling is recognized as one of the most dangerous types of crimes.

“For example, in Ireland the smuggler faces from 12 months to 5 years in prison, and in the UK – up to 7. In Turkey in 2002, the Parliament voted for the abolition of the death penalty for smuggling, replacing it with life imprisonment. Caught in Turkey smuggler will be judged according to Turkish laws, a citizen of whatever country he may be. And in Romania you can go to jail for transportation of even one pack of contraband cigarettes through the “green corridor”, – said the lawyer.

Kostyra sure that the problem should be solved in complex.

“First of all to introduce criminal liability for smuggling of alcohol and tobacco at the border – and then to increase the liability for the unlicensed trade via the Internet stores, and reinforcing sales of such products to minors”, – he concluded.

We will remind, according to the newspaper “Capital” of Ukrainian alcohol beverages smuggling can be delivered to EU countries, in particular in the UK.

“In order not to pay taxes, excises, and all kinds of customs payments, on the securities of vodka (from Lviv – ed.) will be sold first in Africa in offshore areas, and then to Lithuania. To dispatch her plan in Trakai (city in Lithuania) for a huge logistics warehouse. There she will wait for that time, yet on paper, conduct the transaction, after which the product “by the London Treasury” will move to the shelves of British shops. During this time the cost of one bottle of smuggled drink will increase in 5 times – from 4 to 18 pounds, 14 of which Ukrainian “Shamati” suggest to put it in his pocket”, – notes the edition with reference to the investigations of journalists, published in the Ukrainian media.

“Capital” indicates possible involvement in organizations such scheme foreigner Neil Smith, known in Ukraine for last year’s loud scandal with attempt of raiding the trade mark “Medoff”.

As written, the volume of legal vodka production in Ukraine reduced for 5 years.