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Five million cigarettes seized in Co Armagh

An operation to disrupt the sale and supply of illegal tobacco in Co Armagh has uncovered more than five million cigarettes, all believed to be illicit.

Officers from HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) attended premises in Lurgan on Tuesday.

A total of 5.2 million non-UK duty paid cigarettes, with an estimated £2m duty and VAT evaded, were seized.

Steve Tracey, Assistant Director, Fraud Investigation Service, HMRC, said: “The sale of illegal tobacco will not be tolerated by us or our partner agencies.

“Disrupting criminal trade is at the heart of our strategy to clampdown on the illicit tobacco market, which costs the UK around £1.9 billion a year. This is theft from the taxpayer and undermines legitimate traders.

“We encourage anyone with information about the illegal sale of tobacco to report it online or call the Fraud Hotline on 0800 788 887.”

Enquiries are continuing.

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