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Gloucestershire Business News

Plans to sell illegal cigarettes are flushed out

Trading standard officers successfully seized £2,700 worth of illegal tobacco and cigarettes that were stashed in a Gloucester shop's bathroom.

A total of 394 packets of cigarettes were seized, 152 packets of which were counterfeit Mayfair and Richmond brand, in the raid yesterday by Gloucestershire County Council's trading standards officers.

Officers also uncovered 145 pouches of tobacco, some of which were stashed in the bathroom, while others were brazenly left on kitchen work tops.

The shop had manipulated the bathrooms drain pipe and air vent so it could be used to discreetly get the illegal products from the hiding place to the shop counter.

A large quantity of money was also discovered during the raid.

It is believed to be the proceeds from the sale of illegal tobacco.

Cllr Tim Harman, cabinet member for public health at Gloucestershire County Council, said: "This is more excellent work carried out by our officers. Illegal tobacco is often produced without being subject to quality control.

"Aside from the usual health concerns associated with smoking; ingredients such as rat droppings, tea and dangerous heavy metals have all been found in counterfeit tobacco seized in the UK."

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