Fake Drink and Cigarettes Seized in Ealing Crackdown

Warnings given to traders not paying their taxes


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Thousands of pounds worth of counterfeit alcohol and tobacco has been seized from shops across Ealing.

A joint operation was led by Ealing Police, HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) and the borough council’s Licensing team.

Wine, spirits, beers and tobacco which had not had duty paid on them were taken from 15 off-licence premises across the area.

The haul included more than 450 litres of spirits, 7,960 cigarettes, 420 litres of beer and nine kilograms of tobacco.

PC Simon Doyle, Ealing Police Licensing Team said : ''Ealing Police, together with HMRC and Ealing Council are committed to ensuring that all alcohol sold across Ealing Borough is legitimately purchased by Off Licenses from reputable sources with the correct duty paid. Formal action will be taken against premises that do not.”

Bob Gaiger, HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) spokesperson, said: "Alcohol and tobacco fraud harms honest businesses, costs jobs, and takes money away from public services and, increasingly, it is run by highly organised criminal gangs.

''We are keen to work closely with local residents and communities in the fight against this type of crime.  We would encourage anyone who knows of someone selling cheap or duty free alcohol or tobacco to contact the Customs Hotline on 0800 59 5000 or email: customs.hotline@hmrc.gsi.gov.uk.”

Councillor Ranjit Dheer, cabinet member for community services and safety, said:

"It's totally unacceptable that there are businesses in our borough who think its okay to operate in this way. Its disgusting to think they are selling counterfeit goods, and not paying the right taxes on alcohol and tobacco. By acting together with other agencies we can take tougher enforcement action."


 8th February 2012


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