Warwickshire County Council Trading Standards seized nearly 40,000 illegal cigarettes hidden in shops in Rugby and Nuneaton, valued at over £ 30,000.
Trade standards officers and Warwickshire Police armed with sniffer dogs raided several shops in the district this week to track down illegal cigarettes and tobacco being sold.
During their search, officers seized 2,000 packets of cigarettes and 186 packets of roll-your-own tobacco.
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Officers seized illegal cigarettes and tobacco, both counterfeit and unpaid, with a combined illegal value of £ 12,765 – and such an authentic value of around £ 30,000.
Warwickshire County Councilor Andy Crump, Community Safety Portfolio Holder, said: ‘I am delighted that our Trade Standards Officers are working closely with Warwickshire Police to remove illegal cigarettes and tobacco from our streets.
“We know that sellers of illegal cigarettes sometimes target children and youth, causing them to start smoking.
“Organized criminal gangs are the source of much of the illegal tobacco trade and the sale of these products funds other criminal activities.”
The shops searched were not named.
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