Reports of money laundering and counterfeit products led police to recover thousands of illicit cigarettes as well as unrecorded money in a crackdown on Wirral stores this week.
Merseyside Police said officers had “received intelligence on money laundering and counterfeit products” leading to a joint operation with trade standards officers in locations across Wirral.
More than 1,000 packs of cigarettes and tobacco were recovered during the raid on shops in Wirral, along with a large amount of cash.
Merseyside Police released a statement on the operation on the Wirral Police Facebook page on Wednesday, June 9, showing photos of a huge consignment of cigarettes packed into shopping bags as well as money seized during of the raid.
A spokesperson for Merseyside Police, posting on social media, said: “TeamBeb officers worked alongside business standards in a joint operation today.
“Various stores across Wirral were visited by local law enforcement teams and local agents after receiving information about money laundering and counterfeit products sold at these locations.
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“Officers seized over 1,000 illicit packets of cigarettes and tobacco.
“Officers also seized a large sum of money which has not been found. It is believed that this money was intended to be used for criminal purposes.”
The Wirral stores involved in the operation have not been named.