Goods seized from independent stores
Tobacco and alcohol has been seized in Acton following an operation by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) to clampdown on the illicit trade.
Working in close partnership with the Metropolitan Police Service, officers seized illicit goods from two independent stores in Acton W3, yesterday, 27 January 2015, including.
• 2,500 litres of beer
• 10 litres of spirits
• 2,600 litres of wine
• 7,200 cigarettes
• five kilos of hand rolling tobacco
The total duty evaded is around £7,670
Jennie Kendall spokesperson for HMRC, said:
“This illegal trade has a devastating impact on legitimate retailers, who have to compete with black market traders. It’s robbing the UK economy of vital funding and those selling these goods do not promote they are buying them from criminals - the profits of which are funding organised crime to the detriment of all our communities.
“We appeal to local people and businesses to join us in the fight against crime and encourage anyone with information on illegally imported goods, or tax evasion and fraud, to contact the Customs Hotline on 0800 59 5000.”
Sergeant Graham Edwards, Ealing Borough Licensing, said:
"In Ealing we strive to reduce alcohol related violence. The availability of cheap alcohol can cause this and counterfeit alcohol is a potential risk to public health. Our excellent partnership working with HMRC is enabling us to reduce the amount of alcohol and tobacco that is either counterfeit, or where the duty has not been paid, from shop-shelves and therefore from the streets of Ealing. This is an excellent result and we look forward to future joint operations with our HMRC colleagues."
No arrests have currently been made. Investigations are ongoing.
The operation is part of Operation Equinox a Metropolitan Police Service initiative to reduce violence with injury.
28th January 2015