Pilot sentenced to 10 years for not declaring of overseas purchases
A pilot was sentenced to 10 years in prison and fined 200,000 yuan (31,000 US dollars) for no declaration of the products he bought overseas for his parents and friends, which has also caused controversy on Chinese social media.
According to the Fourth intermediate People’s Court of Beijing on Saturday, the man, identified with a surname of Li was convicted of smuggling common goods. All his purchases were confiscated along with the judgment and he got a one-year reprieve.
The Customs area at Beijing Capital International Airport /VCG Photo

The Customs area at Beijing Capital International Airport /VCG Photo

Li was a pilot of Air China Cargo, the country’s only cargo airline operating with the national flag. He was found wearing a high-priced female wrist watch and taking two luxury rings in his pocket and a wallet in his suitcase at Beijing Capital International Airport Terminal 2 after he finished his flight from Frankfurt in February last year. Another wristwatch was later found in his colleague’s suitcase when they entered Beijing through the airport’s nothing-to-declaration channel.
All of Li’s purchases numbered the tax of 190,000 yuan (29,000 US Dollars) and were discovered when the Beijing Customs officials applied a routine check on him and his baggage.
Beijing Capital International Airport /VCG Photo

Beijing Capital International Airport /VCG Photo

Li detailed in court that his father asked him to buy two name-list watches as gifts while his friends commissioned him to buy a couple of rings for a wedding, and confessed that he had learned the regulation that pilots stationed overseas are not permitted to take advantage of duties to overly buy for others.
VCG Photo

VCG Photo

The case legally came to an end but Chinese social media has consistently had a debate over the verdict.
“I don’t understand why he cannot bring gifts for friends?” @Panghudainikandianying commented.
“If I bought a cake or some bread overseas am I convicted of smuggling?” @Conglinfazetanlang asked.
However, some netizens hold an opinion that the punishment is too light and he deserves a death penalty.
As stipulated in the China Customs regulation, anyone taking products above 5,000 yuan (770 US Dollars) shall enter the country through declaration channels of airports and the amount beyond the limit should be taxed.