output 1

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Facilitation of the legitimate movement of goods across the border, while intercepting prohibited and restricted imports and exports

This output covers the processing of goods across the border, including:

Prohibited and restricted items include illicit drugs, weapons, pornography, unsafe products, therapeutic goods, wildlife, quarantine items and items which breach intellectual property rights. This output also covers the investigation and prosecution of non-narcotic prohibited import and export offences.

Performance measures

Figure 25: Performance against targets set in the 2001-02 PBS-output 1# 
Quantity/quality performance measures 
Target*
 
Actual
 
Quality     
Proportion of electronically lodged import entries where an authority to deal is transmitted within 15 minutes of receipt of a complete and accurate entry 
97.00%
 
98.67%
 
Electronic cargo systems - availability to Customs clients (availability against typical work day)  Air cargo automation 
99.70%
 
99.71%
 
Sea cargo automation 
99.70%
 
99.76%
 
Weight of drug seizures by mode of importation 
**
 
Figure 26
 
Weight and number of drug seizures by significance of offence 
**
 
Figure 27
 
Number of detections and/or seizures of other prohibited imports from international air passengers^ 
**
 
Figure 32
 
Quantity: 
Number of air waybills reported^ 
4 158 500
 
4 137 329
 
Number of sea cargo manifest lines reported 
1 382 900
 
1 386 433
 
Number of international aircraft^ 
122 000
 
114 810
 
Number of vessel arrivals  First ports 
11 900
 
10 530
 
All ports 
20 600
 
18 260
 
Number of customs import entries lodged^  Electronic 
2 900 000
 
2 804 960
 
Manual 
17 000
 
18 449
 
Number of export entries lodged^ 
1 400 000
 
1 455 689
 
Price 
$274.429 m
 
$237.762 m
 

* Targets may be performance targets, service level targets or estimates.
** Performance targets cannot be estimated through any reliable statistical or other method.
^ Measure and/or targets were changed in the Portfolio Additional Estimates Statements.
# The measures relating to number of overseas postal articles arriving and percentage of electronically reported consignments subject to electronic risk assessment for community protection purposes were removed in the Portfolio Additional Estimates Statements.

Figure 26: Drug seizures by mode of importation 
   
Seizures
 
Weight (kg)*
 
   
1999-00
 
2000-01
 
2001-02
 
1999-00
 
2000-01
 
2001-02
 
Air passenger & crew  Cannabis 
272
 
321
 
273
 
5.73
 
4.59
 
1.89
 
Cocaine 
28
 
26
 
21
 
39.04
 
9.27
 
9.51
 
Heroin 
14
 
12
 
34
 
28.11
 
2.93
 
35.40
 
Phenethylamines^ 
49
 
51
 
35
 
36.27
 
64.70
 
123.24
 
ATS** 
20
 
17
 
22
 
19.52
 
2.81
 
1.99
 
Other^^ 
208
 
423
 
426
 
-
 
-
 
-
 
Cargo & postal#  Cannabis 
589
 
596
 
497
 
16.04
 
66.10
 
2 942.10
 
Cocaine 
49
 
36
 
78
 
251.21
 
328.24
 
37.50
 
Heroin 
24
 
14
 
12
 
240.45
 
214.85
 
384.22
 
Phenethylamines 
54
 
96
 
249
 
90.61
 
273.71
 
320.24
 
ATS 
39
 
32
 
178
 
2.23
 
81.88
 
14.81
 
Other 
2 585
 
3 089
 
5 348
 
-
 
-
 
-
 
Shipping & aircraft##  Cannabis 
6
 
9
 
2
 
0.11
 
0.14
 
0.01
 
Cocaine 
1
 
1
 
1
 
502.00
 
88.23
 
938.00
 
Heroin 
-
 
1
 
-
 
0.00
 
0.00
 
0.00
 
Phenethylamines 
1
 
1
 
1
 
15.80
 
0.00
 
1.56
 
ATS 
1
 
1
 
3
 
0.00
 
0.00
 
411.45
 
Other 
2
 
6
 
5
 
-
 
-
 
-
 
Total  Cannabis 
867
 
926
 
772
 
21.88
 
70.84
 
2 944.00
 
Cocaine 
78
 
63
 
100
 
792.25
 
425.74
 
985.02
 
Heroin 
38
 
27
 
46
 
268.57
 
217.77
 
419.62
 
Phenethylamines 
104
 
148
 
285
 
142.67
 
338.42
 
445.04
 
ATS 
60
 
50
 
203
 
21.75
 
84.69
 
428.26
 
Other 
2 795
 
3 518
 
5 779
 
-
 
-
 
-
 

* Weight may be gross net or estimated. Where seizures of amphetamine-type substances (ATS) and phenethylamines have been recorded in tablets an estimate of 0.29 grams per tablet has been used.
** ATS group includes amphetamine and methylamphetamine type substances and their close equivalents.
^ Includes MDMA (ecstasy) and MDMA analogues such as MBDB (eden).
^^Other drug group includes stimulants other than cocaine or ATS, narcotics/analgesics other than heroin, pshychotropics/hallucinogens other than ecstasy or cannabis products, performance-enhancing drugs and all depressants and sedatives.
# Includes seizures made from air cargo, sea cargo and international post.
## Includes seizures made from sea passengers and crew, vessels and aircraft.

Figures may vary from those previously published due to adjustments arising from administrative corrections, subsequent chemical analysis and further information received from the Australian Federal Police. Also, seizures subject to ongoing investigation (including controlled deliveries) may not initially appear.

Figure 27: Drug seizures and significance of offence 
   
Seizures
 
Weight (kg)*
 
Significance^ 
1999-00
 
2000-01
 
2001-02
 
1999-00
 
2000-01
 
2001-02
 
Commercial             
Cannabis 
-
 
-
 
1
 
-
 
-
 
2 932.10
 
Cocaine 
14
 
4
 
3
 
751.16
 
414.07
 
975.32
 
Heroin 
9
 
4
 
12
 
261.64
 
212.64
 
404.45
 
Phenethylamines^^ 
25
 
39
 
24
 
139.83
 
333.35
 
435.79
 
ATS** 
3
 
1
 
4
 
17.28
 
79.11
 
421.17
 
Trafficable             
Cannabis 
41
 
44
 
27
 
16.80
 
66.33
 
8.18
 
Cocaine 
50
 
39
 
77
 
41.07
 
11.66
 
9.69
 
Heroin 
27
 
15
 
30
 
6.92
 
5.13
 
15.18
 
Phenethylamines 
70
 
99
 
244
 
2.84
 
5.06
 
9.26
 
ATS 
45
 
33
 
152
 
4.46
 
5.57
 
7.06
 
Minor             
Cannabis 
826
 
882
 
744
 
5.08
 
4.50
 
3.72
 
Cocaine 
14
 
20
 
20
 
0.01
 
0.01
 
0.01
 
Heroin 
2
 
8
 
4
 
0.00
 
0.00
 
0.00
 
Phenethylamines 
9
 
10
 
17
 
0.00
 
0.00
 
0.00
 
ATS 
12
 
16
 
47
 
0.01
 
0.01
 
0.03
 
Total             
Cannabis 
867
 
926
 
772
 
21.88
 
70.84
 
2 944.00
 
Cocaine 
78
 
63
 
100
 
792.25
 
425.74
 
985.02
 
Heroin 
38
 
27
 
46
 
268.57
 
217.77
 
419.62
 
Phenethylamines 
104
 
148
 
285
 
142.67
 
338.42
 
445.04
 
ATS 
60
 
50
 
203
 
21.75
 
84.69
 
428.26
 

* Weight may be gross net or estimated. Where seizures of amphetamine-type substances (ATS) and phenethlamines have been recorded in tablets an estimate of 0.29 grams per tablet has been used.
** ATS group includes amphetamine and methylamphetamine type substances and their close equivalents.
^ Significance of offence is based on the classification used in the Customs Act 1901 and is summarised as:

 
Heroin
 
Cocaine
 
Cannabis
 
Cannabis resin
 
Commercial
 
1.5kg and over
 
2kg and over
 
100kg and over
 
500kg and over
 
Trafficable
 
between 2g and 1.5kg
 
between 2g and 2kg
 
between 100g and 100kg
 
between 20g and 500kg
 
Minor
 
Less than 2g
 
Less than 2g
 
Less than 100g
 
Less than 20g
 

For other cases of drugs, the definitions used for the purpose of this table are:

 
ATS
 
Phenethylamines (includes ecstasy)
 
Commercial
 
2kg and over
 
1.5kg and over
 
Trafficable
 
between 2g and 2kg
 
between 2g and 1.5kg
 
Minor
 
Less than 2g
 
less than 2g
 

^^ Includes MDMA (ecstacy) and MDMA analogues such as MBDB (eden).

Figures may vary from those previously published due to adjustments arising from administrative corrections, subsequent chemical analysis and further information received from the Australian Federal Police. Also, seizures subject to ongoing investigation (including controlled deliveries) may not initially appear.

Drug seizures

Drug detection, as indicated under Output 1, is one aspect of Customs border protection function-albeit a highly important aspect. Customs in cooperation with other law-enforcement and border agencies aims to reduce supply through detection of illicit drug imports.

When targeting large-scale organised drug trafficking, investigations are often lengthy and result in a small number of large seizures that can impact heavily on organised criminal syndicates. A single seizure can have significant repercussions on the capability of criminal syndicates to organise subsequent imports, through removal of key individuals. The large size and small number of these seizures can cause large variations in weight of drugs seized from year to year.

Customs drug-supply reduction and border protection efforts were bolstered through:

Major drug seizures

A single detection of almost 412kg of various types of methylamphetamines from a small craft at Mooloolaba, Queensland in July 2001 began a run of large seizures of illicit drugs. It included a record detection of crystalline methylamphetamine (152kg-almost double the previous largest amount) and Customs largest-ever detection of methylamphetamine in tablet form (almost 260kg). The seizure was the result of a long-term Customs investigation after a call to its community participation program, Customs Watch.

The largest seizure of cocaine in Australia to date was made during a joint operation by the Australian Federal Police (AFP), Customs and Western Australia Police in July 2001. A marine vessel dumped 938kg of the drug on a remote area of coastline at Dulverton Bay, near the Shark Bay area, Western Australia. A 30-metre converted fire-tender vessel was used to transport the drugs from South America. Customs Coastwatch aircraft and two Customs vessels played a significant role in the operation. While the number of cocaine detections at the Australian border has not changed greatly from early-1990s levels, the quantity detected has increased markedly.

Cannabis resin (also known as hash or hashish) concealed inside two shipping containers was seized in Melbourne in August 2001. This seizure of almost three tonnes is among Australia's top ten cannabis resin seizures and is the largest seizure of the drug ever made in Victoria. The containers from the Middle East were reported as carrying marble.

Australia's largest detection of any precursor chemical was made during a Customs examination of a sea cargo consignment in Melbourne in August 2001. The consignment contained six pallets of ceramic tiles concealing 22 bags of crystalline ephedrine of approximately 25kg each-a total weight of 556.4kg. This represents after manufacture approximately five tonnes of street-level methylamphetamine tablets.

One of the biggest single MDMA (ecstasy) interceptions from passenger baggage made by Customs at an Australian airport occurred at Brisbane in September 2001 when staff detected and seized an estimated 30kg of tablets. The tablets were found in toy boxes contained in baggage. The tablets tested positive to MDMA during a particle analysis examination conducted on a Customs ionscan machine.

Customs was involved in a joint operation resulting in the detection of 148kg of MDMA in October 2001. Customs x-ray technology was used to identify the substance concealed in a shipment of marble tiles. This was followed in December 2001 with a detection of 124kg during another joint operation in which Customs detected MDMA tablets concealed in piping in commercial freezers.

Customs staff found 378kg of heroin concealed in packaged rice noodles when they inspected a sea cargo container that arrived at Fisherman Islands Wharf in Brisbane in March 2002. The container was selected for examination by Customs cargo targeting specialists. Staff x-rayed 240 cardboard cartons with 27 found to contain blocks of heroin. Following the detection the AFP conducted a surveillance operation.

Scrutiny of air courier packages arriving from overseas resulted in Customs staff in Sydney seizing more than 30kg of MDMA, about 108 000 tablets, in May 2002. The drugs were discovered following inconsistencies noted during x-ray examination of a consignment of three boxes, declared as CD-roms. A subsequent ionscan particle analysis examination gave a positive reaction to MDMA.

On 27 April 2002 Customs staff found 9.7kg of amphetamine paste in air courier cargo in Perth. The package was selected when the x-ray image did not reflect the stated contents. The package was handed to AFP who conducted a controlled delivery.

National Illicit Drug Strategy (NIDS)

Information on the NIDS strategy is under Key Priorities.

Illicit drug issues

Precursors and new and emerging drugs

According to findings by the Illicit Drugs Reporting System, the increased prevalence of amphetamine-type substances (ATS) in the Australian community in 2001-02 continued a trend observed over a number of years. This increase in use, particularly of the more potent forms such as methylamphetamine was evident among specific population groups, such as injecting drug users.

The most potent form of methylamphetamine (ice or shabu) is imported and there was a significant increase in detections of potent forms of methylamphetamine. Between 1997-98 and 2001-02, detection increased from less than one kilogram to more than 154kg of ice with a single detection of 152kg.

The demand for less-pure forms of ATS, especially methylamphetamines, is met largely from domestic illicit manufacturing operations. Domestic manufacture requires sourcing of precursors-the raw materials or primary substances and chemicals used in the manufacture of synthetic drugs. These precursors can be illicitly obtained locally or sourced through illegal importation.

Stringent domestic controls have increased incentives for criminal importation of precursor chemicals to supply the large-scale domestic manufacture of amphetamine and/or methylamphetamine. Consequently, Customs increased its focus on precursor importation.

Customs, working closely with Australian and international law-enforcement agencies, seized significant quantities of chemical precursors during the year and successfully disrupted domestic illicit drug manufacturers.

Australia's largest detection of any precursor chemical was made during a Customs examination of a sea cargo consignment in August 2001. A seizure in January 2002 of 4.5kg of piperonal in four separate packages would have produced about two kilograms of MDMA (ecstasy). This detection was significant as MDMA precursors are uncommon in Australia, whereas detections of methylamphetamine precursors are more common.

Figure 28: Amphetamine-type substance and crystalline methylamphetamine (ice) seizures by weight (kg) 
Amphetamine-type substances
 
Crystalline methamphetamine (ice)
 
Period 
Seizures
 
Weight (kg)*
 
Seizures
 
Weight (kg)*
 
1999-00 
42
 
13.02
 
18
 
8.73
 
2000-01 
35
 
1.22
 
15
 
83.47
 
2001-02 
173
 
273.94
 
30
 
154.31
 

* Weight may be gross net or estimated. Where seizures of amphetamine-type substances (ATS) have been recorded in tablets an estimate of 0.29 grams per tablet has been used.

Figures may vary from those previously published due to adjustments arising from administrative corrections, subsequent chemical analysis and further information received from the Australian Federal Police. Also, seizures subject to ongoing investigation (including controlled deliveries) may not initially appear.

Customs Illicit Drugs Unit developed products to increase the knowledge and awareness of precursor chemicals among Customs and law-enforcement staff. The precursor education program will be increased over the coming year, including the potential development of specific training courses for Customs staff.

There was increased Commonwealth and State law-enforcement and health interest in the toxic drug known as gamma-hydroxybutyrate (GHB or fantasy) and its precursor gamma-butyrolactone (GBL) which, when ingested, is converted to GHB in the body. GHB is a party scene drug, and is popular with body-builders. Analysis by the Australian Institute of Criminology indicates evidence of its use in the commission of criminal offences including date rape. Its prevalence and popularity in Australia appears to have increased with a large number of seizures of GBL and GHB kits containing GBL recorded in 2001-02. Between 1 January and 16 April 2002 there were 39 detections-more than in the previous four years combined. Since 16 April 2002, detections declined following Customs success in intercepting past shipments.

Heroin shortage

The heroin shortage documented in Australia since late 2000 continued throughout 2001-02 according to the Illicit Drug Reporting System. It is thought law-enforcement successes in intercepting large heroin importations and disrupting the syndicates behind them compounded supply problems stemming from reduced crop yields in source countries, increased consumption in the source region and, possibly, diversion to other markets.

The National Drug Law Enforcement Research Fund has initiated a research project to increase knowledge and understanding of the causes, effects and policy implications of the heroin shortage in Australia. Customs is a board member of the fund and is represented on the advisory committee for the research project.

Benefits of the reduced availability of heroin include a significant decrease in heroin overdose deaths and an increase in people seeking treatment. Increases in the smuggling of smaller quantities of heroin, such as by air-passenger courier, is likely to reflect the disruption of established high-level importation groups using cargo streams. However, Customs continued to focus on high-level heroin trafficking and detections for this financial year which included Australia's second largest seizure of heroin.

Figure 29: Weight of heroin seizures (kg) (89 kb)

Figure 30: Weight of heroin seizures (kg) by means of entry (89 kb)

Tough on Drugs in Sport

Customs plays a key role in the Commonwealth Government's Tough on Drugs in Sport strategy by enforcing import and export controls for a wide range of performance-enhancing drugs.

Customs continues to work closely with its Tough on Drugs in Sport partners to ensure that, wherever practical, drugs that are banned in sport are also prohibited imports. In March 2002, the EPO-like endurance-enhancing hormone, darbepoetin alpha, was added to the Customs (Prohibited Imports) Regulations 1956.

As part of Tough on Drugs in Sport, Customs also continues to provide the Australian Sports Drug Agency and Australian Sports Commission with information on the importation of these drugs by competitors (as defined by the Australian Sports Drug Agency Act 1990).

Customs played an active part in the Council of Europe's assessment of Australia's compliance, as a signatory, with its Anti-Doping Convention. The assessment found that Australian Customs mechanisms to monitor and control these movements were numerous and were as effective as any in the world.

Performance-enhancing drugs

Technology such as x-ray machines, an intelligence-driven risk-management approach to screening and targeting and substantially increased intervention contributed significantly to Customs making a record number (1 630) of performance-enhancing drug seizures in 2001-02, continuing a five-year trend.

Figure 31: Interceptions of performance-enhancing drugs* 
1999-2000
 
2000-01
 
2001-02
 
Air passenger & crew       
Steroids 
59
 
67
 
61
 
DHEA 
34
 
72
 
90
 
Hormone 
6
 
12
 
15
 
Cargo & postal^       
Steroids 
556
 
553
 
698
 
DHEA 
500
 
475
 
561
 
Hormone 
40
 
116
 
203
 
Other#       
Steroids 
1
 
2
 
-
 
DHEA 
-
 
-
 
2
 
Hormone 
-
 
-
 
-
 
Total       
Steroids 
616
 
622
 
759
 
DHEA 
534
 
547
 
653
 
Hormone 
46
 
128
 
218
 

* This is a subset of seizures of drugs listed as Other in Figure 26.
^ Includes seizures made from air cargo, sea cargo and international post.
# Includes seizures arising from post-border operations.

Figures may vary from those previously published due to adjustments arising from administrative corrections, subsequent chemical analysis and further information received from the Australian Federal Police. Also, seizures subject to ongoing investigation (including controlled deliveries) may not initially appear

Anabolic and androgenic substances such as DHEA and androstenedione are available legally in other countries and continued to make up the majority of seizures. These substances are often advertised as being legally available on a large number of Internet sites (under the laws of the website's home country) and claim to enhance general health or have anti-ageing effects. These substances can be abused for performance-enhancement.

Container x-ray

Funding under the Tough on Drugs program provided the capital cost of container x-ray facilities in both Sydney and Melbourne.

Each facility will have the capacity to x-ray up to 100 containers per day. The facility will limit the physical handling of goods and save time in processing goods through Customs, improve the capacity to detect prohibited goods, such as illicit drugs and illegal firearms, and assist in identifying non-compliance with import and export requirements.

Installation sites in Melbourne and Sydney were acquired for container examination facilities. A generic scanning hall design was developed incorporating site-specific modifications.

The Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Authority granted siting and construction licences for the scanning facilities.

Construction of both sites has commenced. The facility in Melbourne will be operational in October 2002 and in Sydney in early 2003.

Customs is developing commercial agreements with stevedores to provide container handling services and is conducting a tender process for the unpack/repack of containers and transport services. Arrangements will be in place before the opening of the first container examination facility.

Standard operating procedures were developed to ensure that new operations meet corporate standards and organisational objectives.

A coordinated targeting strategy was developed between areas of Customs to maximise the application and capability of the container x-ray system. A specialist training program, Unit 4, X-ray Education Program, was developed to train container x-ray operators.

Following the 2002-03 Federal Budget, additional funding was provided for container x-ray facilities in Brisbane and Fremantle.

A site for the facility was acquired in Brisbane and a container x-ray system was ordered for the site. Construction of the Brisbane facility will begin in July 2002, with completion scheduled for early 2003. The procurement process was started for the Fremantle facility.

Pallet x-ray

In May 2002 a pallet x-ray system manufactured in the US was commissioned in the sea cargo examination facility in Sydney, the first of two such systems under a $4.4 million contract.

The second system is scheduled for installation in the new container inspection facility in Melbourne in the later part of 2002.

This technology will increase Customs capacity to detect prohibited and illicit goods and enhance the efficiency of the examination process.

New and emerging technologies

Customs continued to evaluate new and emerging technologies for border protection including:

The national waterfront closed circuit television (CCTV) system project combines modern video and transmission technologies to expand Customs ability to manage its border protection responsibilities more efficiently and effectively on the national waterfront.

The cameras and communications infrastructure were installed at 88 wharf sites in 56 ports at a cost of $16.2 million. The infrastructure rollout was completed and put into service in 2002, and the system gives Customs a central capability for remote access to the regional CCTV infrastructure from the National Monitoring Centre in Melbourne.

National upgrade of the Customs UHF radio network to a digital, fully encrypted radio system cost approximately $7.5 million. Along with replacement and upgrade of radio repeaters to full digital capability, additional hand portable subscriber units, mobile units and radio frequency controls were purchased. This gives Customs a voice secure UHF radio system, fully compatible with other law-enforcement agencies as well as the Customs digital radio system installed in the Torres Strait.

Remedial works were commissioned in Western Australia, for replacement of a large radio tower at Port Hedland and the construction of a tower and communications shelter at Geraldton. These works were undertaken to support the roll out of the digital UHF radio network and as maintenance of the HF radio network.

A $20 000 high frequency radio telephone interconnect system was installed in the Christmas Island area. The service provides long-range communications for Coastwatch aircraft operating in the region, extending to the islands of the Cocos-Keeling group. It also provides an alternate communications platform for Customs staff now stationed on Christmas Island.

Equipment for maintenance of all components of the digital UHF radio network and all other Customs radio assets were purchased.

Customs client data management strategy (CDMS)

CDMS, a strategic approach to managing client information, allows for more efficient and effective business administration processes and risk assessment.

A program of software development projects, the strategy was initiated in 2001-02 to consolidate client information across multiple Customs business systems. It is expected to run for up to three years and once completed will provide software systems to support:

As part of CDMS there is software functionality called CLIENT VIEW, which is planned for 2002-03. It will provide common standards and generic components to allow staff to bring together information on Customs clients to improve the quality and timeliness of decision-making.

The first year of the program's operation set the foundation for delivery of software applications to meet specific business needs and also contributes to the overall Customs information architecture.

The EXAMS project will deliver a system to support the specific needs of container x-ray examinations early in 2002-03. The PENALTIES project puts in place in July 2002 the first part of the support necessary to record and manage penalties under the Customs Legislation Amendment and Repeal (International Trade Modernisation) Act 2001, part of Cargo Management Re-engineering.

Drug detector dogs

At 30 June 2002, Customs had 35 operational detector dog teams with five teams in training. They are in each capital city and Cairns. Detector dogs are part of Customs technology cell, specialising in narcotic detection as a mass-screening tool.

Traditionally Customs detector dogs were trained as either active response dogs or passive response dogs and were only deployed in their specialised area. The detector dog program now has a program to train multi-purpose response teams.

These new teams can be deployed in all areas with dogs providing an active response to inanimate objects such as baggage and a passive response to people. Detection of powder drugs by multi-purpose teams has been a focus of the training.

Detector dogs provided operational support to a number of Customs activities and police agencies. Three notable seizures by detector dogs were:

Detector dog breeding program

The National Breeding and Development Centre continued to provide national and international assistance.

As well as supplying Customs with dogs for training, State and Federal agencies are increasingly relying on dogs from the Customs breeding program for their detection work in illicit substance or counter terrorism.

Customs donated 30 puppies to US counter-terrorism agencies on request following the 11 September 2001 terrorist attacks. The puppies and personnel assistance were requested by the US Transport Security Administration and the US Institute for Biological Detection Systems to help meet US homeland security objectives.

Australian National Audit Office audit - Drug Detections in Air and Containerised Sea Cargo and Small Craft

The Performance Audit Report No 54 2001-02 Drug Detection in Air and Containerised Sea Cargo and Small Craft was tabled in Parliament on 6 June 2002.

The audit focussed on Customs aspects of:

The audit found that Customs drug-detection strategies for the assessed streams were administratively sound, particularly in terms of Customs intelligence structures and systems, law-enforcement cooperation, governance arrangements and response capabilities. The increase in drug-detection capabilities afforded by the container x-ray systems was noted.

The audit made eight recommendations, covering enhancements to Customs intelligence reporting, profiling, targeting and examination regimes. The recommendations support continued development of a performance-measurement system for Customs drug-interception activities and suggested consideration be given to assessing the effectiveness of Customs NIDS initiatives.

Many of the recommendations are progressing or will be addressed through the introduction of planned new computer systems (such as the Integrated Cargo System, part of the Cargo Management Re-engineering project or the EXAMS system within the Client Data Management Strategy), training programs and initiatives already under development.

continued...


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