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Sat, 16 Jan, 2016 12:08:36 AM
FTimes-Xinhua Report, Jan 16
 
Customs examines the wine traded on internet evading tax. File Photo – Lehtikuva.
The Finnish Customs on Friday announced that it has investigated an online alco-hol and cigarette trafficking, and two Finnish vendors were suspected of transmit-ting alcohol from Estonia to Finland with unpaid taxes amounting to euro 350,000.
 
The online shop named Viinakauppa.eu is a company registered in Estonia. The responsible persons are two Finnish men.
 
Since last summer, the online shop's business has expanded rapidly through im-porting alcohol from Estonia to Finland. 
 
Its customers have totalled more than 1,500 in Finland and the largest single order was worth more than euro 7,000, said the Customs.
 
The preliminary investigation showed that the company has not paid taxes either in Finland or in Estonia. The two suspects have been detained on suspicion of aggra-vated tax fraud.
 
News agency STT adds: The offence could lead to a sentence ranging from four months to four years.
 
The business advertised itself as being responsible for payment of all the taxes as well as arranging for transportation.
 
The pre-trial investigation established the trading to be a case of remote selling, since the company behind Viinakauppa.eu did actually arrange and paid for trans-portation of alcohol consignment to Finland.
 
The suspects and their company have not paid taxes in Finland and based on the investigation, there are suspicions that they neither paid taxes in Estonia.
 
On the basis of the preliminary investigation, the suspects were aware of the excise duty and alcohol regulation as well as Customs guidelines.
 
According to the Customs, the intention was to immediately run down the scheme when the returns had been maximised before the authorities became aware of the activities.
 
Last week, officials of the Finnish Customs told media that Finland is set to strengthen alcohol taxation on online businesses. The move is expected to collect millions of euros in unpaid alcohol taxes from online vendors in other EU states.
 
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