Customs seize 30 million smuggled cigarettes at docks

Daily Echo: Customs seize 30 million smuggled cigarettes at docks Customs seize 30 million smuggled cigarettes at docks

One of the biggest ever hauls of smuggled cigarettes has been discovered in Southampton.

An investigation has been launched after more than 30 million cigarettes were seized at the city's container port in a shipment that was supposed to be full of wind turbines.

The haul, which is the largest Southampton has ever seen, was uncovered last week, when Border Force officers discovered 8.5 million cigarettes crammed inside a cargo container on Friday March 1.

Further investigations led officers to another two containers full of the illegal imports, bringing the total number seized to 30.3 million.

The smugglers were trying to avoid paying £8 million in taxes and duty and had described the containers' contents as “wind turbine parts” on import documents.

The three cigarette laden containers were loaded onto a cargo vessel in the Shenzhen area of China.

The incident has now been referred to HM Revenue and Customs for investigation.

John Cooper, assistant director of the HMRC's criminal investigation team, said: “The diligence of Border Force officers has prevented a huge quantity of cigarettes, believed to be Chinese counterfeits, from reaching the UK's streets.

“The sheer scale of this haul would undoubtedly have seen criminal gangs selling the tobacco to retailers, clubs, car boot sales and eventually UK consumers.

“HMRC will continue to work with Border Force to crackdown on tobacco fraud, which costs the UK Government around £1.8 billion a year.”

Anyone with information about the incident, or tobacco smuggling in general, should contact the Customs' Hotline on 0800 59 5000.

Comments (10)

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2:18pm Thu 7 Mar 13

Outside of the Box says...

Someone's money making idea just went up in smoke, I bet the Border agency staff are rolled up laughing.
Someone's money making idea just went up in smoke, I bet the Border agency staff are rolled up laughing. Outside of the Box

2:25pm Thu 7 Mar 13

bigfella777 says...

What a waste
What a waste bigfella777

2:38pm Thu 7 Mar 13

miltonarcher says...

bigfella777 wrote:
What a waste
Bit like all the lives that are wasted by smoking related illnesses. Glad they trashed these fags. Now double the tax on them in the UK so the brainless addicts who continue to smoke and ignore the health warnings can subsidise the NHS.
[quote][p][bold]bigfella777[/bold] wrote: What a waste[/p][/quote]Bit like all the lives that are wasted by smoking related illnesses. Glad they trashed these fags. Now double the tax on them in the UK so the brainless addicts who continue to smoke and ignore the health warnings can subsidise the NHS. miltonarcher

2:50pm Thu 7 Mar 13

boilerman says...

bigfella777 wrote:
What a waste
No not a waste
These are counterfeit cigarettes containing even more harmful toxins than legit fags.
[quote][p][bold]bigfella777[/bold] wrote: What a waste[/p][/quote]No not a waste These are counterfeit cigarettes containing even more harmful toxins than legit fags. boilerman

3:16pm Thu 7 Mar 13

minnie64 says...

miltonarcher wrote:
bigfella777 wrote: What a waste
Bit like all the lives that are wasted by smoking related illnesses. Glad they trashed these fags. Now double the tax on them in the UK so the brainless addicts who continue to smoke and ignore the health warnings can subsidise the NHS.
Brainless addicts !!!! Dont these brainless addicts as you call them pay into the NHS anyway for their treatment !!!!!
[quote][p][bold]miltonarcher[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]bigfella777[/bold] wrote: What a waste[/p][/quote]Bit like all the lives that are wasted by smoking related illnesses. Glad they trashed these fags. Now double the tax on them in the UK so the brainless addicts who continue to smoke and ignore the health warnings can subsidise the NHS.[/p][/quote]Brainless addicts !!!! Dont these brainless addicts as you call them pay into the NHS anyway for their treatment !!!!! minnie64

3:43pm Thu 7 Mar 13

Stroppy_gramps says...

right up until the point that the illness they caught from smoking the things in the first place stops them from working and they start to claim benefits because they can't work any more.

kind of circular and self destructive isn't it.
right up until the point that the illness they caught from smoking the things in the first place stops them from working and they start to claim benefits because they can't work any more. kind of circular and self destructive isn't it. Stroppy_gramps

3:47pm Thu 7 Mar 13

Stroppy_gramps says...

and besides, you pay in to the NHS to keep it running now.
you are not paying in to a pot to treat yourself if you get ill at some undefined point in the future.

Yes - the tax from cigarettes does contribute massively to the NHS. But then the drain on the NHS from smoking related diseases is also massive.
Try imagining a world where the NHS didn't have to deal with illnesses related to an activity that is known to be harmful. Heaven knows the NHS might actually work properly after all these years if it didn't have this millstone round its neck!
and besides, you pay in to the NHS to keep it running now. you are not paying in to a pot to treat yourself if you get ill at some undefined point in the future. Yes - the tax from cigarettes does contribute massively to the NHS. But then the drain on the NHS from smoking related diseases is also massive. Try imagining a world where the NHS didn't have to deal with illnesses related to an activity that is known to be harmful. Heaven knows the NHS might actually work properly after all these years if it didn't have this millstone round its neck! Stroppy_gramps

4:00pm Thu 7 Mar 13

minnie64 says...

Stroppy_gramps wrote:
and besides, you pay in to the NHS to keep it running now. you are not paying in to a pot to treat yourself if you get ill at some undefined point in the future. Yes - the tax from cigarettes does contribute massively to the NHS. But then the drain on the NHS from smoking related diseases is also massive. Try imagining a world where the NHS didn't have to deal with illnesses related to an activity that is known to be harmful. Heaven knows the NHS might actually work properly after all these years if it didn't have this millstone round its neck!
Trouble is most illnesses are related to so many activities - drinking, smoking, clogging up bodies (heart etc) with bad diet so they may end up out of work !!!!! That'll be the day
[quote][p][bold]Stroppy_gramps[/bold] wrote: and besides, you pay in to the NHS to keep it running now. you are not paying in to a pot to treat yourself if you get ill at some undefined point in the future. Yes - the tax from cigarettes does contribute massively to the NHS. But then the drain on the NHS from smoking related diseases is also massive. Try imagining a world where the NHS didn't have to deal with illnesses related to an activity that is known to be harmful. Heaven knows the NHS might actually work properly after all these years if it didn't have this millstone round its neck![/p][/quote]Trouble is most illnesses are related to so many activities - drinking, smoking, clogging up bodies (heart etc) with bad diet so they may end up out of work !!!!! That'll be the day minnie64

7:22pm Thu 7 Mar 13

elvisimo says...

minnie64 wrote:
miltonarcher wrote:
bigfella777 wrote: What a waste
Bit like all the lives that are wasted by smoking related illnesses. Glad they trashed these fags. Now double the tax on them in the UK so the brainless addicts who continue to smoke and ignore the health warnings can subsidise the NHS.
Brainless addicts !!!! Dont these brainless addicts as you call them pay into the NHS anyway for their treatment !!!!!
Of course - that's the whole purpose of the NHS - to spend 10's or even 100's of thousand on pounds on preventable self inflicted illness.
[quote][p][bold]minnie64[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]miltonarcher[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]bigfella777[/bold] wrote: What a waste[/p][/quote]Bit like all the lives that are wasted by smoking related illnesses. Glad they trashed these fags. Now double the tax on them in the UK so the brainless addicts who continue to smoke and ignore the health warnings can subsidise the NHS.[/p][/quote]Brainless addicts !!!! Dont these brainless addicts as you call them pay into the NHS anyway for their treatment !!!!![/p][/quote]Of course - that's the whole purpose of the NHS - to spend 10's or even 100's of thousand on pounds on preventable self inflicted illness. elvisimo

12:06am Fri 8 Mar 13

wossit says...

elvisimo wrote:
minnie64 wrote:
miltonarcher wrote:
bigfella777 wrote: What a waste
Bit like all the lives that are wasted by smoking related illnesses. Glad they trashed these fags. Now double the tax on them in the UK so the brainless addicts who continue to smoke and ignore the health warnings can subsidise the NHS.
Brainless addicts !!!! Dont these brainless addicts as you call them pay into the NHS anyway for their treatment !!!!!
Of course - that's the whole purpose of the NHS - to spend 10's or even 100's of thousand on pounds on preventable self inflicted illness.
Its no worse than fat people !!! and bearing in mind they get over £5 in tax from every packet of cigarettes. Not that i agree with smoking but they are paying for it.
[quote][p][bold]elvisimo[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]minnie64[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]miltonarcher[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]bigfella777[/bold] wrote: What a waste[/p][/quote]Bit like all the lives that are wasted by smoking related illnesses. Glad they trashed these fags. Now double the tax on them in the UK so the brainless addicts who continue to smoke and ignore the health warnings can subsidise the NHS.[/p][/quote]Brainless addicts !!!! Dont these brainless addicts as you call them pay into the NHS anyway for their treatment !!!!![/p][/quote]Of course - that's the whole purpose of the NHS - to spend 10's or even 100's of thousand on pounds on preventable self inflicted illness.[/p][/quote]Its no worse than fat people !!! and bearing in mind they get over £5 in tax from every packet of cigarettes. Not that i agree with smoking but they are paying for it. wossit

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