Home of N2D.

You are not logged in. Would you like to login or register?



30-9-2016 7:29 pm  #1


Help....

Hi I am new to the site and need some help/advice if possible.....

I got stopped at East Midlands Airport back in February 2013 and had some tobacco seized. recently (almost 4 years later!) I get a ''tobacco tax'' demand for over £3000! I would like to know how to fight this! I have copy and pasted the appeal letter I wrote to them when I got the demand...the appeal was of course denied! Below is the letter which will give all the info....

Furthermore……..
I found the tactics/questions/processes used by the customs officer I dealt with at the time to be bizarre, intimidating and pointless as from the very outset I got the very distinct impression that no matter what I said the end result was going to be the same and therefore it seemed the customs officer had already decided on a course of action before he even asked me the first question!
After doing some research it would seem that there are a lot of people that found themselves in this situation and have found the above to be true also.
A couple of things I was asked-
1)    How many cigarettes do I get out of a pouch of tobacco? I mean honestly how would I know that? I do not count everyone I make and sometimes I put more tobacco in one than I do in others, sometimes I drop half way through the process of rolling so I have to start again….etc however the officer I dealt with wanted an answer so I said a figure which based on his reaction was an incorrect answer however I am guessing that whatever answer I gave it would have been wrong! To make my point about how senseless this question is let me ask a question of my own…..as you read this letter think about how many tins of produce you have in your cupboard at home right now…could you tell me the exact amount? Probably not and I or anyone else would not blame you for not knowing either!
2)    I was asked about my personal circumstances finances..etc. To be honest the only thing I have to say about this is that is a complete invasion of privacy! However I was pressed and pressed and so gave the officers some figures!
The above questions are just 2 of several questions I was asked however most of the questions I was asked were of a similar nature in the fact that they were invasive, bizarre and intimidating and asked in the same fashion. The whole process made me feel like I was on trial for a crime I committed which is ironic because as outlined earlier in this letter I had followed the rules/regulations/laws outlined by you in relation to this subject!
I did not complain (I only raise this now because of the situation I find myself in!) at the time about the questions/tactics/processes used by the customs officer I dealt with as I wanted the whole thing to be over which I was told by the customs officer that as the goods were seized the matter is now over and resolved so I just put it out of my head, moved on and just forgot about the whole unpleasant matter. Imagine my surprise when several years later I get a letter asking me to pay over £3000 which completely contradicts what the officer at the time told me which was that as the goods had been seized that was the end of the matter 
I would kindly ask that you review this matter as I am sure once you have you would agree that I have not broken any rules/regulations/laws relating to this subject and as such the amount I am being asked to pay should be quashed.
Please confirm receipt of this letter by calling and/or emailing me using the contact details at the top of this letter.

Please help if you can.

Many thanks

Neil

 

30-9-2016 8:20 pm  #2


Re: Help....

Think as it was such a long time ago that the goods will have been destroyed and according to eu law if the goods have been destroyed you arnt liable to the duty.
I'm sure a more educated member will point you in the rite direction.

 

30-9-2016 8:27 pm  #3


Re: Help....

Cheers for the info! Most helpful!

I don't suppose there's an official link to the eu law you mentioned?

Thanks

     Thread Starter
 

30-9-2016 8:35 pm  #4


Re: Help....

It is my understanding that HMRC have 3 years to issue any form of personal tax penalty. I believe this applies across the board to most forms of tax. I used this as a reason not to agree to a VAT penalty which they tried to impose on me for unintentional underpayment of VAT. The matter was dropped. The exception to the rule is if there is evidence of intentional wrongdoing in which case they can invoke a statute which gives unlimited time. As far as I am aware these rules have not been changed.

The question in your case is when the 3 years expires. If you appealed and/or applied for restoration I would guess that the 3 years starts when those processes are exhausted and not from the date of the seizure. Without giving too much of your personal details away, I note your IP address is France. Is it possible these demands were issued a while ago and have only just caught up?

I would try this line of reply first and see how it progresses. If this is not successful you need to establish if the goods were destroyed after the seizure. Customs policy is to destroy perishable goods (tobacco) within 30 days. If this is the case then we have another option available but pointless going into detail at this stage.


http://i45.tinypic.com/24uxqug.png
Please ensure you do not divulge any information which could identify you as Border Force will use your posts here as evidence against you in court.

 
 

01-10-2016 7:49 am  #5


Re: Help....

Hi,

Great info thanks. You are correct in assuming that these demands were issued sometime ago and have only just caught up with me as I moved address shortly after the seizure...would this make the time limit of 3 years null and void?

     Thread Starter
 

01-10-2016 9:41 am  #6


Re: Help....

londonlad wrote:

Hi,

Great info thanks. You are correct in assuming that these demands were issued sometime ago and have only just caught up with me as I moved address shortly after the seizure...would this make the time limit of 3 years null and void?

If the demands were issued within the 3 years then option 1 is not available to you.

As I mentioned above you need to establish if customs' policy was adopted in your case and the goods were destroyed. If so we can use option 2. I would rather not go into that at this stage on an open forum where it is known BF/HMRC monitor the pages.A simple phone call to BF would probably  establish the fate of the goods and then come back for the next step. 
 


http://i45.tinypic.com/24uxqug.png
Please ensure you do not divulge any information which could identify you as Border Force will use your posts here as evidence against you in court.

 
 

01-10-2016 9:51 am  #7


Re: Help....

I thought the situation in my case with the time limit would be the case. No worries I shall make a call to BF and come back to you. Thanks for your help so far.

 

     Thread Starter
 

01-10-2016 10:29 am  #8


Re: Help....

londonlad wrote:

I thought the situation in my case with the time limit would be the case. No worries I shall make a call to BF and come back to you. Thanks for your help so far.

 

If the demands were properly issued I don't think there is a time limit to collect the debt. I had a bailiff's letter which related to a motoring offence 10 years previous saying they had only just found me. Don't know why as my vehicles and driving license were properly reg'd to my address. I had to go to court to make a statutory declaration to have it set aside as it was nothing to do with me.
 


http://i45.tinypic.com/24uxqug.png
Please ensure you do not divulge any information which could identify you as Border Force will use your posts here as evidence against you in court.

 
 

02-10-2016 8:45 am  #9


Re: Help....

Hi,

OK so I will call BF (tomorrow now a s I assume they are closed today as its Sunday) and I will let you know the outcome.

Thanks for all you help and advice so far!

Cheers

     Thread Starter
 

02-10-2016 8:59 am  #10


Re: Help....

Think I would try the NPSU at Plymouth first. If you don't have the paperwork the number is on the forum but you'll have to search for it. (Use search button at top)


http://i45.tinypic.com/24uxqug.png
Please ensure you do not divulge any information which could identify you as Border Force will use your posts here as evidence against you in court.

 
 

02-10-2016 9:36 am  #11


Re: Help....

OK great

Thanks...I will be in touch!

     Thread Starter
 

06-10-2016 1:13 pm  #12


Re: Help....

Hi,

OK I have been in touch with HMRC, NPSU and UK BF. The goods were destroyed. It was mentioned in the last few posts that A) If the goods have been destroyed then I am not liable....If that's the case then how do I go about using that fact? and B) It was mentioned there was a 2nd option...what is that?

Appreciate your help.

Cheers

     Thread Starter
 

06-10-2016 2:49 pm  #13


Re: Help....

PM sent.

Just to add.....

The rules state that anyone living abroad must employ a solicitor for correspondence. However this is contra to EU law and is a topic of debate. So at this stage I would ignore it, but better if you have a UK address.


http://i45.tinypic.com/24uxqug.png
Please ensure you do not divulge any information which could identify you as Border Force will use your posts here as evidence against you in court.

 
 

Board footera

 

Powered by Boardhost. Create a Free Forum

Disclaimer:- This forum is an open forum, and anyone can post their thoughts here (within reason). Therefore the views expressed here are those of individuals and not necessarily those of Nothing 2 Declare. We try to allow as much freedom of speech as possible, including views that some may find objectionable. This includes the views of UKBA, Border Force, HMRC, legitimate cross-border shoppers, non-legitimate importers, general public and anyone else that wishes to post.
Regarding ourselves, we categorically do not condone smuggling and neither do we condone the current tactics used against legitimate cross-border shoppers by UKBA/Border Force and HMRC. The current tactics benefit both Customs and smugglers alike.
Although some people use real names, there is no guarantee that they are who they say they are; it is impossible for us to verify identities of all members.