Aussie Customs On The Lookout For Mortal Kombat Imports

James Kozanecki over at Gamespot has spoken to a spokesperson from the Australian Customs and Border Protection Service, who has confirmed that Mortal Kombat has been added to its list of prohibited items and that gamers who import could be subject to a fine of up to three times the cost of the game.

"Customs and Border Protection works closely with Attorney General’s Department to identify imported games that are banned in Australia," claimed the spokesperson. "This includes games purchased over the internet from foreign websites…

"Any copies of the games detected at the border, including via international mail, will be seized."

Aussie customs to seize Mortal Kombat imports [Gamespot]


Comments

    Sounds like a challenge to me.

    I have to find a very very loose man to smuggle the game in for me. How big is the collectors edition??

      dude u can just go get it from new zealand and bring it back in your luggage with like 2 other dvds and customs wont give a shit, thats how people got l4d2.

      Or a very very loose woman

      If you or anyone does accept this challenge & does get the game seized, head to www.refused-classification.com & let them know.

      There's an article on that site commenting on the surprisingly low number of video game seizures by customs (mainly coz Oz customs don't make it publicly known what they seize).

      Good luck to anyone who tries, but if it doesn't work, let them know. The stats could be useful in the future...

        So If they get my game I ordered what do I do on that website

      Mc do it

    .... facepalming realy hard right now.

    ok, australia. so you dont have a r-18 rating... ok, you dont alow mortal kombat to be sold here. australians have two options now, import, or pirate.
    then, you tell them you will fine them if they import..

    brilliant work, now everyone is just gonna pirate it.

    not that i wanted the game, but its just idiotic for this to be happening.

      So I guess now they have backed me into a corner and I turn to the good old bit torrent...

      Well played Australia... sigh

      Don't forget your old friends Steam and D2D :)

      Steam will probably not list it on their site for Aussies, but there is always region ip unlocking on Steam if you happen to travel internationally a lot and happen to let them know that you do :)

        you mean that game that isn't being released on the windows format ?

        Fairly certain that it isn't being released (at this point in time anyway) on PC - only PS3 and Xbox 360...

    Why not just come to my house and beat me until I can't remember the game even exists?

    Fascists.

    Thank you very much Gamespot for not only spouting the damned obvious (ie. customs will seize restricted items if they bother to actually inspect your parcels)

    But for also putting a damned target on the new MK. People have been importing games for donkey's years in au whether via eBay or online shops. And I have yet to see anyone busted/fined for importing games..

    Mainly because of the fact that in the grand scheme of things video games are the LEAST of border controls problems... (drugs, weapons, etc.)

    But hey why not give them a heads up and say target these game imports instead?

    People will want to get their hands on this game and if the semi-gray area of imports are closed off can you guess what au players will turn to?

    The good news is... judging from the article it just sounds like standard answer to "if we find anything illegal in your parcel" script... instead of an actual red cross hair on game imports =/

      The profile of this one pretty much already ensured that they'd pay more attention to it than they otherwise would. That said, your chances are still pretty good because prohibited video games are fairly low on the list of customs priorities.

    welcome to australia, age limit, 7

      I hear next year they're banning cars. People die in accidents you know. Don't worry, we're all going to be assigned "bumper cars" like at carnivals.

      Also, incase anybody falls over when they get out of their car we're going to have to wear bubblewrap duct taped around ourselves and a protective mask with a smell filter so we won't be offended with the way cities smell like urine.

    Remember that other country and regime that decided they didn't like the content of another medium and decided to prosecute anyone obtaining them? Hint: its was Germany and the Nazis

      It's happened a few times throughout history... but nobody suspected the Spanish Inquisition!

        Our chief weapon is surprise. That's it, just surprise.

        What about fear?

        Oh yes alright alright alright, Surprise and Fear.

    You can seize my games, but you'll never seize my FREEDOM!

      lol

      They already have taken your freedom.

    so they are going to spend resources that could be used finding drugs,weapons etc and instead devote their manpower to stopping the importation of a video game

      You can blame fundamentalist pricks for that.

        amen !

    Good to see my tax dollars are going to something worthwhile!

    I see this as just being an attempt to deterr people, x-ray devices wouldn't pick up whether or not its actually Mortal Kombat, just that it's a disc in a case. Could be a DVD and any variety of game.

    I very much doubt they will check every single package with a disc in it.

    Otherwise, going overseas and smugglin' it up your butt is still a viable option.

      I approve of this

      Yeah. I think this is just the standard response when asked for a comment about importing pretty much anything you're not meant to. After all they can't turn around and say 'unless the sender is dumb enough to write Mortal Kombat (that banned game) on the tracking slip it'll probably get through'. Pretty much the only thing they can do is say they're cracking down and hope to scare people off.

      Plus it's customs we're talking about. There's no money in stopping games coming in, and there's no harm that can be directly traced back to them letting a game in, so no matter what they say Mortal Kombat is never going to be high on their list of priorities.

      all they need to know is known online stores, if it has a disc in it, then they may check it. I know for a fact when windows 7 came out, and we got our free upgrade, customs opened up the envelope with the windows 7 software upgrade to check it, and even put phamplets in there to show what they do, why they do it (though its pretty much to say we are doing our job)

      besides, dont most stores have an option to make special requests? (not sure how far they would go, but they could do something?)

    on behalf of all Aussie gamers:

    "fffffffffffFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUU-"

    Seriously, see what this has done, without an R18 rating people will result into getting it pirated which makes just BUYING THE GAME LEGALLY not that bad.

    If this country allowed previous MK's and even movies like Saw (that has an MA15+ RATING?!) in here then why not this?

    WHAT IS SO BAD ABOUT THIS GAME? NOTHING!

    The only bad thing here is that the ACB not getting off their lazy fat arse and giving us an R18 rating. Its not that that hard!

    Sure it would probably take a year to implement, but I can wait! Just announce it that we are getting R18 rating and I'll breathe easier because that means that we won't need to worry about future banning.

    I'M JUST SO SICK OF NOT BEING ABLE TO DO SOMETHING.

      It's a little more work than just adding it to a to-do list, this is a whole policy change. However, it is quite frustrating nonetheless.

        I just hope Duke doesn't get axed as well.

        It might happen the same way as L4D2 did, you could pre-order it but within just weeks of release it got axed and was re-released as a "craptacular" version.

        straight up in 2010 the gaming industry earned 3 times the ammount that thje movie and music industry made put together.. How can Australia be so backwards and stupid not to have an r18 rating when the gaming industry is such a huge market.. I'll admit right now, because of this i have downloaded mk as a torrent and will be burning and playing it. Fuck you australian politicians

    communist assh*les

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Communisim

      Please learn what communism is before you throw the word around :|

        Bang on there mate.

    Expected, but they really don't have the time to go through everything and the dogs can't smell Mortal Kombat (well, at least I don't think they can...)

    Just be aware that FedEx/UPS/etc. always declare [stuff] with customs and that your best chance is with standard int. mail, even though they're trying to scare people away from it.

    I'll probably try and get MK ~2 months after release.

    POS!!! So much rage... but i'm still going to try.

    The problem is though, how many packages are actually checked, and what's the chance of it being one specific game? Adding to that, every game I've bought has "optical media" written on the declaration. So add DVD's to that!

    Unless I'm completely wrong and they have a much cooler way of working out whats inside a package these days :P

    Time to turn into the Goatse man.

      XD im not that desperate for it...i'll go for importing first hahahahhaa

    As stated above the x/ray scanners can't tell what game it is. Play-Asia always put generic terms on their shipping labels (for standard shipping) like "toys" or "DVD". L4D2 and others made their way to my home without any issues.

      Really? My friend's already ordered an import. I'm a bit worried he might get slapped with this fine for ordering it. But it sounds as though it may not be such an issue from what you wrote?

    I dont think customs has the energy to individually check each package, i could be wrong though they are pretty extremely petty people

    Awesome news! While customs is busy checking your parcels for MK disks, I'm going to import a few kg of Coke and live the high life!

      Coke is sold by the litre not by the Kg.

        Wrong coke

          It was Capitalised... so the per-L, rather than Kg, response was technically correct. Life is a 'Nix-based world, not a MS-based one... so it's case-sensitive ;)

    Ok I'm really confused. I thought that it was ok to import RC'd games? So long as you aren't buying them or selling them in aus? Could someone clarify this for me? I've been hearing so many different stories, like the laws are different in my state (WA).

      Afaik WA and NT illegal to own RC, RC ok to own in other states and territory. Customs will confiscate RC material if found.

      Illegal to Import

      Okay to own, except WA.

      Basically, if you get it past Customs, you're fine.

        Ok I had it the wrong way around, thanks for clearing that up :)

    what an absolute piss take

    I believe Customs examine ~10% of parcels. But I remember when GTA something came out, they apparently paid particular attention to DVD-sized mail from NZ and HK, two places people tend to import RC games from.

    Of course, that's all second-hand internet talk, but it's certainly what I'd do if I was them.

    Just so we're clear here - is it 3 times the cost of Australian retail rip-off pricing? or 3 times what we would have paid importing it from a country with reasonable pricing.

      The article says "three times the value of the product, or A$110,000, which ever is greater". So unless you plan to import more than $36,000 worth of Mortal Kombat, why do you care?

      That said, I doubt they would try to apply a fine that large unless you were importing commercial quantities of the game.

        As James suggests, making a distinction between how much you paid for it versus the Australian market value is relatively insignificant when you look laws surrounding the penalties.

        I preface this by stating that I am not a lawyer, nor do I have any legal background. I have simply followed the trail of information. This should not be taken as legal advice.

        As the article states, RC'd content is considered "objectionable material" under regulation 4A of Customs (Prohibited Imports) Regulations (1956). The penalty for doing so is outlined in 233AB(2) of the Customs Act (1901) as "3 times the value of those goods; or 1,000 penalty units; whichever is greater."
        http://www.austlii.edu.au/au/legis/cth/consol_act/ca1901124/s233ab.html

        "Penalty units" are currently defined as $110 by section 4AA(1) of the Crimes Act (1914), which is how the $110,000 figure is derived.
        http://www.austlii.edu.au/au/legis/cth/consol_act/ca191482/s4aa.html

        As for commercial quantities, I remember seeing the numbers of 25 or greater being dealt with differently. But I can't recall where I saw it.

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