The Anti-Corruption Commission on Monday initiated an inquiry into the release of some 30 containers under 22 import consignments from the Chattogram Customs House, which was allegedly secured by hacking two user IDs of ASYCUDA World System, a web-based server of the National Board of Revenue.
The incident took place in June 2018, allegedly by way of hacking the user IDs of two officials, who had already been transferred before the incident, said ACC.
The commission on Monday formed a three-member probe body, led by its director Md Yousuf, said ACC public relations officer Pranab Kumar Bhattacharjee.
A syndicate of importers, clearing and forwarding agents and customs officials managed to have released the consignments, most of which were locked by the NBR’s Central Intelligence Cell and Customs Intelligence and Investigation Directorate for suspicious declaration about the consignments, Pranab said.
The syndicate logged in the global web-based Automated System for Customs Data for customs assessment about 4,000 times in the three years from 2016, using user IDs and passwords of the two customs officials who were once posted at the Chattogram Customs House, according to NBR officials.
The customs intelligence in June 2018, acting on suspicious declaration, asked the Chattogram customs house to lock a consignment in the ASYCUDA World System and stop releasing the goods until physical inspection was made.
But the customs intelligence directorate found that the consignment, along with some others, were released unlocking the system using the user IDs and passwords of the two customs officials, DAM Mohibul Islam and Md Fazlul Haque, NBR officials said.
The user IDs and passwords of the two officials remained active even after their transfer from the Chattogram Customs House, they added.
Either the customs house did not deactivate the user IDs and passwords or the syndicate stole them for the release of the goods, they further said.
M/S Chaklader Service and C&F agents Zarar Enterprise and MR Trade International obtained the release of the consignments.
The customs intelligence filed a case with Ramna police early January against the three enterprises for the forgery.
The police arrested MR Trade International owner Mizanur Rahman Chaklader and a customs official in January for their alleged involvement in the fraud.
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