Opinion Number. 63

Subject

CUSTOMS
WHETHER REMOVAL OF ORIGINAL BRANDS FROM BOXES DURING TRANS-SHIPMENT AT AUSTRALIAN PORTS CONSTITUTES INTERFERENCE

Author
Key Legislation

CUSTOMS ACT 1901, ss. 30, 31, 33

Date

The Acting Premier of New Zealand asks the Prime Minister to inform him whether any Commonwealth law exists forbidding removal of original brands from boxes containing New Zealand butter whilst being trans-shipped at any Commonwealth port.

Section 33 of the Customs Act provides that:
No goods subject to the control of the Customs shall be moved altered or interfered with except by authority and in accordance with this Act.

Goods imported from New Zealand are under the control of the Customs during trans-shipment at a Commonwealth port; see Customs Act, sections 30,31.

I am of opinion that the removal of the original brands from boxes containing New Zealand butter, during trans-shipment, is an alteration or interference which cannot be effected without authority.

[Vol. 1, p. 469]