Hurricane Irma

  Hurricane Irma will go down in history as one of the fiercest in the region and no doubt it will be etched on the minds of those who experienced it for many years to come. The structural impact will not be known for some time now but the impact on lives will be unquantifiable…

American National Arrested for firearms and ammunition

The Customs Department has announced that on 7th July 2017 Cayman Brac Customs Officers arrested a 52-year-old male American national for several firearm offences.

During the inspection of a shipping container a large quantity of ammunition was recovered amongst personal belongings.  Cayman Brac Customs Officers along with officers from the Royal Cayman Islands Police Service conducted a search of his residence where two unlicensed firearms were recovered.

Neither the ammunition nor the firearms were declared to Customs and they did not accompany a firearms import permit.

Acting Collector of Customs Jeff Jackson said “I wish to sincerely thank Cayman Brac Customs and the RCIPS for their collaborative approach to this detection and arrest. This is consistent with Collector Clifford’s and Commissioner Byrne’s policy to promote and facilitate joint operations by our two agencies”

Venezuela Joins Haiti And US As Region’s Major Illegal Guns Supplier

Economic crises in Venezuela may propel that country to the position of one of the Caribbean’s largest supplier of illegal guns and ammunition, along with Haiti and the United States of America, says Anthony Clayton, professor of Caribbean sustainable development at the Univer-sity of the West Indies.

“It is not just the (illegal gun) trade with Haiti or the import of weapons from the United States. There is going to be a third major source of supply into the Caribbean region and that is Venezuela,” Clayton told The Gleaner yesterday.

Clayton said that Venezuela has more guns per person than any country in the Western Hemisphere, a deliberate move by former President Hugo Ch·vez.

Now that the economy is suffering immensely, those arms are being sold rapidly to facilitate basic survival.

“The problem we are facing is, because with Venezuela’s economic collapse, there is now evidence of weapons flooding out of Venezuela, initially into Trinidad, but which will come percolating through the Caribbean. Venezuela has got more guns per person than almost any other country in the (western) hemisphere, including the United States.”

“This is partly due to former President Ch·vez’s policy of arming the militias. Now, with the economy collapsing, a lot of them are selling their weapons and they are selling them for groceries, pharmaceuticals and basic survival items,” Clayton said.

CCLEC 39th Conference held in Miami

Twenty-six (26) delegates across regional and metropolitan Customs Administrations attended the 39th CCLEC Conference which was held at the Sheraton Miami Airport Hotel and Executive Meeting Center, from the 23rd – 25th May, 2017. The theme “Digital partnerships in a connected world” was underlined by two distinguished speakers, Mr. SergioMujica Montes, Deputy Secretary General, World Customs Organization (WCO) and Mr. Ian C. Saunders, Assistant Commissioner, United States Customs & Border Protection (US-CBP).

Among the participants were the Caribbean Postal Union (CPU), CARICOM Implementing Agency for Crime and Security (IMPACS), Regional Security System (RSS), Inter American Development Bank (IDB), SOGET, United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), Universal Postal Union (UPU) and the WCO.

The conference witnessed the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the Caribbean Postal Union and CCLEC, the objective of the MOU being to foster greater cooperation between both entities, particularly in the area of information sharing.

A number of presentations were made on the reform and modernization of CCLEC operations, including moving the organization for one based on an MOU, to being treaty based. Reports were received on the activities undertaken by the CCLEC Secretariat and the CCLEC/WCO Joint Intelligence Office in addition to presentations related to the theme, trade facilitation and border security.

Celebrating International Customs Day 2017

This year International Customs Day is celebrated on January 26th 2017 under the theme “Data Analysis for Effective Border Management’.  The theme is very appropriate given the current climate as it relates to border security. In most jurisdictions around the globe, Customs is recognized as the key law enforcement agency involved in border protection and…

New border control unit to improve efficiency – Saint Lucia


The Customs and Immigration departments along with the Marine Unit will soon form a new entity, the Border Control Unit.

The Border Control Unit will significantly augment the operations of Saint Lucia’s airports and seaports, Minister for Home Affairs, Justice and National Security, Sen. Hon. Hermangild Francis said.

All officers assigned to the unit will receive training.

“Two senior officers—one, a former comptroller of Customs and the other, a senior immigration officer—are tasked with making the recommendations,” Sen. Francis said. “As a tourist destination, we must make the transitions from the airplane or ship to the waiting bus a much quicker process.”

The Border Control Unit is expected to be launched in 2017.

Guadeloupe: Nearly 50 kilos of cocaine found in a fish container

DRUG The estimated value for resale of this merchandise, on the European continent, is around 1.7 million euros …

Guadeloupe customs officers have made a stunning discovery. Saturday night, they seized nearly 50 kilos of cocaine in a container of fish, in the port area of ​​Jarry in Baie-Mahault.

“It was almost a routine check that led to that seizure” said Jean-Damien Moustier, Head of the Caribbean branch of Ocrtis, the Central Office for the Suppression of Illicit Traffic in Narcotics: the drug was concealed in a refrigerated container that had been damaged. As a result of this refrigeration problem, the container, proceeding from Surinam, loaded with frozen fish destined to Belgium, was “diverted” and checked by the Raizet Customs Surveillance Brigade.

Mexican Army seizes more than 220 kilos of cocaine in port Manzanillo

The drug was hidden inside heavy rollers to grind stone.

Mexico City, November 8, 2016.-

The Army-Navy Secretariat of Mexico reports that personnel assigned to the Sixth Naval Region secured yesterday at the port of Manzanillo, Colima, over 220 kilograms of a substance showing characteristics of cocain. This substance was concealed inside the rollers of a crushing machine, which was loaded aboard the ship “Laura Maersk”, Denmark flag. The final destination was the port of Manzanillo.

This action was achieved as a result of naval intelligence work. Combined efforts between staff of the Secretariat of the Navy and the Maritime Customs of Manzanillo led to the inspection of the container with canine teams, which confirmed the said illicit cargo was transported inside the rollers of the stone crushing machine, where 130 brick-shaped packages and three bags containing bulk drug were located.

St Kitts Hosted the CCLEC Executive Committee (EXCO) Meeting

The St Kitts and Nevis Customs and Excise Division hosted the EXCO meeting from November 8-9, 2016.  Customs Comptrollers and representatives from fourteen nations were present at the meeting including Canada and the USA.
The meeting considered a number of initiatives including:

  • The draft treaty
  1. Organizational change
  2. Implementation of RCS2016 and SailClear
  3. Implementation of a customs valuation risk database
  4. Development and accreditation of CCLEC’s training modules
  5. MOUs with strategic partners

The CCLEC which was established in the 1970s has been operating as an informal organisation however it is actively pursuing the formalization of the organisation through a treaty.  This is an issue of monumental significance for the organization as it seeks to increase support for its programmes through donor funding and enhance information sharing.