Anti-Fraud and Anti-Smuggling Task Force :: Task Forces :: Operational Activities

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Anti-Fraud and Anti-Smuggling Task Force

Coordinators: Republic of Albania and Republic of Croatia
Established: February 2003

Main Activities

2016


16th Meeting of the Anti-Fraud and Anti-Smuggling Task Force, 27-28 September 2016, Bucharest/Romania

2015


15th Meeting of Anti-Fraud and Anti-Smuggling Task Force, 4-5 June 2015, Bucharest/Romania

2014


14th Meeting of Anti-Fraud and Anti-Smuggling Task Force, 11-12 June 2014, Bucharest/ Romania

2013


Conference on Best Practices in Combating Illicit Trade of Tobacco Products, 22-23 October 2013, Opatija/ Republic of Croatia

13th Meeting of Anti-Fraud and Anti-Smuggling Task Force, 6 June 2013, Bucharest/ Romania

2012

12th Meeting of Anti-Fraud and Anti-Smuggling Task Force, 18-19 September 2012, Bucharest, Romania

11th Meeting of Anti-Fraud and Anti-Smuggling Task Force, 8-9 May 2012, Durres, Republic of Albania

2011

10th Anti Fraud and Anti-Smuggling Task Force Meeting, 12-13 April, Ohrid, Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia
Anti-Fraud and Anti-Smuggling Task Force Meeting

2010

At the 9th Meeting of the Anti-Fraud and Anti-Smuggling Task Force, 12-13 October, Durres, Albania, the Annual Regional Report on Cigarettes Seizures was presented.

13 meetings and activities at international level

Regional Operations

Operation SHADOW IV - targeting cigarette smuggling

Joint Investigations

6 joint investigations and 5 additional operational/working meetings were supported by SECI Center.

Joint investigation among Customs Authorities from Albania, Romania and Serbia on a case of smuggling of cigarettes

2009

The 8th Meeting of the Anti-Fraud and Anti-Smuggling Task Force, 26-27 May, Bucharest, Romania
Annual Regional Report on Cigarettes Seizures

4 international meetings and activities

Regional Operations

Operation TROJAN HORSE - counterfeit and pirated goods, implemented under the Greek Customs Excise Duties coordination with the participation of all SECI Center countries and some observers

Joint Investigations

Operation ATALANTI - controlled delivery of cigarettes without excise duty labels, investigation among Greece, Bulgaria, Romania and Moldova
Operation ASH - among Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia and Romania on cigarettes smuggling
Joint investigation among Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Bulgaria and Albania on customs fraud issues

2008

At the 7th Anti-Fraud and Anti-Smuggling Task Force Meeting, 3-4 November, Bucharest, Romania, the Regional Report on Cigarettes Seizures was presented.

Regional Operations

Operation SHADOW III - on cigarette smuggling, with the participation of all SECI Center countries
Operation HURRICANE II - on counterfeit and pirated goods, with the participation of all SECI Center member countries

Joint Investigations

Operation COTTON - joint investigation among Customs Services from Serbia and Hungary
COTTON Operation against Textile Smugglers – Regional Cooperation of Customs Services

Background


The Task Force was born as a result of merging in 2003 of two SECI Center task-forces: the commercial fraud task force coordinated by the Customs Administration of the Republic of Croatia and the task force on customs valuation fraud coordinated by the Albanian Customs.
The Anti-Smuggling and Anti-Fraud Task Force has ensured effectiveness in assisting member countries to combat smuggling and customs fraud. The positive influence was mainly achieved by exchanging case information, coordinating regional anti-smuggling operations and supporting joint investigations on cigarette smuggling among the member countries.
From the very beginning, the activity of the task force was centered on regional operations, in order to have a clear picture of the smuggled goods, especially cigarettes, and to set up an active assistance system among the authorities in the region in order to stop the illegal traffic and the fraud attempts.
In June 2004 the SECI Center Task Force on Anti-Fraud and Anti-Smuggling approved the proposal of Hungarian Customs and Financial Guard to implement a regional operation focused on cigarettes smuggled via all forms of transportation (air, sea, rail and road). The exercise was code-named Operation SHADOW and it principally aimed at exchanging information and producing a situation report on cigarette smuggling based on details of seizures made in SEE during a specific period. The active contribution of the participating countries during Operation SHADOW showed their serious commitment to cooperate through SECI Center to counter this phenomenon.

In 2007 the regional information exchange on cigarette smuggling was boosted during the Operation SHADOW II. SECI Center had an excellent cooperation with WCO and Italian Guardia di Finanza.