A Bitter Pill For Ealing's Viagra Peddling Pensioner
Jail for 65-year-old after investigation by HM Revenue
An Ealing pensioner who peddled smuggled cigarettes and huge quantities of illegal, Viagra-type medicine has been jailed for 15 months at Isleworth Crown Court.
Brian Hipwood, 65, from Hanger Vale Lane was arrested in June 2011. He was found half-naked, in an alleyway at the rear of his house, after attempting to flee from a visit by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC). He was clutching a large bag of unlicensed Viagra-type pills.
A search inside Hipwood’s home and two lock-up units revealed a hoard of 79,000 unlicensed male performance boosting tablets. HMRC officers also unearthed a stash of 100,000 non-duty-paid cigarettes, 180kg of tobacco and 1,700 Diazepam tablets.
John Cooper, Assistant Director, Criminal Investigation, said:
''Brian Hipwood ran a number of businesses selling books and general merchandise. It is clear that he was also running an illegal enterprise by supplying smuggled and non-licensed items. Our intervention made his efforts less profitable than he had hoped.
“We continue to investigate and collect evidence against those who have no regard for the law or their customers.”
The duty evaded on the tobacco and cigarettes is estimated at £46,000. The value of the non-licensed medicines is around £65,000 and the Diazepam £650. HMRC was assisted in its investigations by the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA).