The UAE has smashed a ring smuggling diesel and other petroleum products by trucks through the border with other Gulf countries and selling the stuff to clients in remote areas, officials were quoted on Wednesday as saying.
Customs and other inspectors joined hands to seized large quantities of those products, which had been mixed together before they were separated in a primitive way inside the UAE, they said.
Authorities said they are trying to identity the source of the smuggled products as the trucks had crossed the border with more than one Gulf Arab country.
“They were refining and separating those products in primitive and illegal ways…they then sold some separated stuff as diesel,” said Humaid Butti Al Muhairi, assistant undersecretary at the Ministry of Economy.
“They have come through several border points with more than one Gulf country…they carried pumps and sold the stuff in isolated areas.”
Muhairi, quoted by Arabic language newspapers, said investigations are under way to identify the party sponsoring these smuggling operations and those who use these products inside the UAE. He said those seized confessed that they had sold diesel in the country at much cheaper prices.
“We have not yet verified where these products have come from as those border points are used for conducting trade between the UAE and other Gulf states.”
Muhairi warned that such practices negatively affect consumers because the products are refined in an illegal way.
“These are inflammable substances and should be handled in a professional manner…the trucks caught selling them also lack the simplest safety and hygienic conditions,” he said.