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4m cigarettes siezed in Cork

14th Feb, 2010

Customs officers have seized 4.2 million cigarettes in the largest haul of counterfeit tobacco ever landed in the Port of Cork. It is estimated the haul would have cost Revenue over €1 million in lost taxes.

The cigarettes, which were in John Player Blue boxes, were found among a cargo of swimwear manufactured in China which arrived at Tivoli docks in a container last Friday evening. The counterfeit cigarettes were uncovered in a routine operation by customs officers at the docks.

It is understood the cigarettes would have been sold on the market in this country for in the region of €5 a packet even though they would have cost just cents to produce.

This is the second major seizure of counterfeit cigarettes in Cork in recent weeks. On January 28th gardai seized 755,000 counterfeit cigarettes and more than 500kg of tobacco, worth an estimated €500,000.

The intelligence-led operation, involving gardaí and Customs officers, on a private residence at Carrignavar, Co Cork, and searches of a garage and a van by revenue officers.

Follow-up searches of premises on the north side of Cork city and in east Cork led to further seizures.

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