Kim Jong Un accused of attempting to illicitly import opulent Lexus into North Korea.


An Attempt to Smuggle a $70,000 Lexus into North Korea Foiled by Japanese Police

An attempt to smuggle a $70,000 Lexus into North Korea was foiled by Japanese police last week, highlighting North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un’s preference for luxury automobiles despite UN sanctions. Japanese authorities raided a dealer’s headquarters in Chiba to gather evidence of alleged violations of the Japanese Customs Act, uncovering a scheme to smuggle the expensive vehicle into North Korea. This incident sheds light on the consistent defiance of international regulations and UN sanctions by North Korea, demonstrating the country’s persistent efforts to circumvent established restrictions.

Kim Jong-Un’s Fondness for Luxury Automobiles

North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un has been known for his fondness for luxury automobiles, with reports indicating his use of high-end cars such as the Mercedes-Maybach GLS 600 and a Lexus LX SUV. Despite a UN sanction prohibiting the export of luxury items to North Korea, Kim has been observed enjoying these luxury vehicles, signaling a clear defiance of international regulations. Additionally, his late father, Kim Jong-il, was reported to have offered Mercedes-Benzes to loyal officials, further highlighting the regime’s affinity for luxury goods.

Smuggling Attempt and International Sanctions

The smuggling attempt of a Lexus, valued at 10 million Japanese yen, into North Korea through Bangladesh was brought to light when Japanese authorities intervened before the vehicle reached its intended destination. This incident underscores the challenges posed by enforcing international sanctions against North Korea, as the country also faces a 2017 UN sanction prohibiting the export of transportation means. The case exemplifies North Korea’s consistent evasion of established regulations and the need for enhanced international efforts to combat such illicit activities.

Role of Luxury Items in Defiance of Sanctions

In addition to luxury vehicles, Kim and his family have been associated with various luxury items, including high-end watches and designer clothes. These purchases, while seemingly inconsequential, serve as a means of flouting international regulations and UN sanctions, showcasing the regime’s disregard for established restrictions. The use of luxury goods by the North Korean leadership reflects their ability to circumvent sanctions, indicating the necessity for more effective enforcement measures to counter such evasive tactics.

Response and Measures Against North Korea

In response to North Korea’s persistent defiance of international regulations, security advisers from the United States, South Korea, and Japan have called for enhanced measures to suppress the country’s development of nuclear weapons, cybertheft activities, and alleged arms transfers. This includes new initiatives aimed at disrupting North Korea’s capacity to gain revenue from hacking and the laundering of cryptocurrency, reflecting a concerted effort to counter the regime’s illicit activities. Furthermore, there is an urgent need for increased and improved economic initiatives to thwart North Korea’s revenue and strategic priorities, signaling a crucial area for international focus and action.

Newsweek is committed to challenging conventional wisdom and finding connections in the search for common ground.


Micheal Kurt

I earned a bachelor's degree in exercise and sport science from Oregon State University. He is an avid sports lover who enjoys tennis, football, and a variety of other activities. He is from Tucson, Arizona, and is a huge Cardinals supporter.

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