More

    £15,000 worth of illegal tobacco seized in Bedford

    iStock image

    Bedford Borough Council’s Trading Standards Officers, in collaboration with HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) and Bedfordshire Police, have undertaken an effective joint operation on Wednesday (28) to combat the illegal tobacco trade in Bedford.

    The council today (1) stated that test purchases were conducted at two premises on Midland Road, Bedford, leading to the seizure of over 13,500 illegal cigarettes and 5.1 kilograms of hand-rolling tobacco with an estimated retail value of £15,000. These were found in a van shared by the premises to store the illicit products and the HMRC also seized the vehicle involved. Investigations into those responsible for the seized tobacco are currently ongoing, with the potential for further enforcement action.

    This operation, executed under Operation CeCe, a National Trading Standards initiative in collaboration with HMRC, is aimed at curbing the illegal tobacco trade nationwide. Lord Michael Bichard, Chair of National Trading Standards, highlighted the significant impact of this initiative, stressing, “The trade in illegal tobacco harms local communities and affects honest businesses operating within the law.”

    Councilor Phillippa Martin-Moran-Bryant, Portfolio Holder for Community Safety, Regulatory Services and Housing at Bedford Borough Council, praised the efforts of Trading Standards Officers and the collaborative work with law enforcement agencies. She emphasised the council’s commitment to ensuring the safety and well-being of residents, stating, “This significant seizure is a stark reminder of the harmful impact the illegal tobacco trade has on our community. Not only does it undermine legitimate businesses, but it also funds criminal activity and poses health risks to residents. 

    “I applaud the collaborative efforts of our Trading Standards team, HMRC, and Bedfordshire Police in tackling this issue and encourage residents to report any suspected illegal tobacco activity. Together, we can make Bedford a safer and healthier place for everyone.”

    The businesses involved in this operation cannot be named until formal action has been successfully taken, the council stated.

    Latest

    Biona condiments range heats up with two new mustards

    Organic food supplier Biona is introducing two new high-quality...

    Florette partners Jet2 Holidays and Megan McKenna in fresh promo

    Salad brand Florette is aiming for the skies this...

    Carbonated drinks brand, TRIP, launches functional mushroom and adaptogen range

    Soft drinks brand TRP has launched a new range,...

    57% of businesses expect to never be fully cashless

    Cash is here to stay, with nearly 6-in-10 businesses...

    Don't miss

    Biona condiments range heats up with two new mustards

    Organic food supplier Biona is introducing two new high-quality...

    Florette partners Jet2 Holidays and Megan McKenna in fresh promo

    Salad brand Florette is aiming for the skies this...

    Carbonated drinks brand, TRIP, launches functional mushroom and adaptogen range

    Soft drinks brand TRP has launched a new range,...

    57% of businesses expect to never be fully cashless

    Cash is here to stay, with nearly 6-in-10 businesses...

    Groundbreaking integration trial between Gander and Snappy Shopper yields remarkable results

    In a landmark trial, two leading tech firms joined...

    57% of businesses expect to never be fully cashless

    Cash is here to stay, with nearly 6-in-10 businesses (57 per cent) expecting to never be entirely cashless despite the widespread adoption of electronic,...

    Groundbreaking integration trial between Gander and Snappy Shopper yields remarkable results

    In a landmark trial, two leading tech firms joined forces to revolutionise convenience shoppers' user experience, culminating in outstanding results that promise to reshape the food...

    Bread, cereal maker warns of possibility of higher prices

    UK’s leading bread and cereal maker has warned of potentially higher prices in the coming months citing “very small” grain harvests in the UK...