Questions are being asked about why a senior Berbice Anti-Smuggling Squad (BASS) officer is still stationed in the area despite being ordered transferred after being implicated in trying to “set-up” a senior Customs officer.
Stabroek News was told that several senior Guyana Revenue Authority (GRA) officials are unhappy with the fact that despite orders, the man is still stationed in Berbice. This newspaper was told that late last year, the BASS officer made several allegations against the Customs Head in Berbice to the GRA management. The matter stemmed from an importer who imported 40 cases of alcohol but only declared 19. The BASS official alleged that the importer claimed that the Customs Head in Berbice advised him to give a false declaration.
Investigations were done and it was revealed recently that the allegation was false and the BASS officer had intended to “set-up” the Berbice customs head, according to an official familiar with the investigation and confirmed by another.
Stabroek News was told that the GRA board decided that both officials should be transferred. Since then, the Customs official has been transferred while the BASS officer remains at his post in Berbice. Several officers are unhappy with this state of affairs since despite the results of the investigation, the BASS officer is not being penalized while the customs officer has been removed from the area, this newspaper was told.