Lanyou Numeral was one of the top sellers on Taobao.com, a Chinese online marketplace. Earlier this week, 25 suspects—mostly housewives from Mainland China—were tried for smuggling in Apple iPhones and iPads on behalf of Lanyou Numeral in a bid to avoid paying the high import duties levied on the products.
They also evaded taxes of up to 54.87 million yuan, Shenzhen Intermediate People's Court heard. The Lanyou store shut down in April.
More than half of the suspects are housewives lured to play the part of tourists in Hong Kong to buy up mass quantities of handsets to sell in China's mainland, the Southern Metropolis Daily reported yesterday.
They were paid 20 to 30 yuan in commission for each item.
[~6 yuan = 1 USD]
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