Officers seize more than 49,000 untaxed cigarettes from Gravesend shops
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Officers from Gravesham’s Community Safety Unit have seized more than 49,000 illegal cigarettes which were reportedly found inside shops in the town.
At around 2pm on Friday 8 January 2021, during a routine patrol of the town, officers because suspicious that untaxed cigarettes were being sold inside a shop in Milton Road. They attended the store and are said to have found more than 38,000 cigarettes, which had not paid the necessary duties, being stored and sold.
During a similar patrol, on Tuesday 12 January, a shop in Pelham Road South is also reported to have been found selling illegal cigarettes. The officers then seized more than 11,000 cigarettes and 92 pouches of untaxed tobacco.
Details of both seizures were passed onto Kent Trading Standards and Kent Police continues to work with Gravesham Council to ensure appropriate action is taken.Chief Inspector Junior Dann, District Commander for Dartford and Gravesham said: ‘Offending like this is not a harmless crime.
‘Opportunistic shopkeepers who stock and sell these untaxed cigarettes, and illegal tobacco, affect law abiding businesses which are operating legitimately.
‘As a force we work tirelessly to ensure any business found benefitting from the sale of illegal cigarettes and tobacco products are dealt with robustly.
‘We continue to work with partner agencies, such as Trading Standards, to ensure any business found operating in this way is stopped from doing so, and we will continue to clamp down on businesses which are involved in this type of offending.’
The untaxed tobacco was removed from the shops and officers are continuing to make enquiries in connection with the ongoing investigations.