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    JTI removes tobacco gantries from two stores

    Wallasey store after gantry removal

    Japan Tobacco International (JTI) has removed its equipment from two stores which were found to be selling illegal tobacco.  

    The removal of JTI’s gantries from Go Local in Wallasey and Finlays News in Stalybridge sends a clear message to those selling or tempted to sell illegal tobacco products, that when caught, their actions will have consequences.  

    Test purchasing undertaken for JTI in 2023 found that both stores were selling illegal tobacco and as a result JTI has terminated its relationship with the stores and removed its gantries. 

    JTI removes tobacco gantries from two stores
    Stalybridge store after gantry removal

    The evidence gathered against these two stores, together with evidence of further 478 stores selling illegal tobacco and/or vapes last year through JTI’s test purchasing programme, has already been made available to law enforcement agencies, so further legal ramifications may follow. 

    “The illegal tobacco trade remains a serious problem in the UK,” said Ian Howell, Public Affairs Manager at JTI. “In fact, an analysis of data from the Office for National Statistics undertaken by JTI suggests that spending on illegal tobacco products in the UK is double the amount spent on narcotics. 

    “With the government’s proposed generation ban, we feel there is a real risk that this could only exacerbate the issue of illicit trade, handing more money to serious and organised crime groups that manufacture and sell illegal tobacco and vapes.”  

    If anyone is aware of a store that is selling illicit tobacco or vapes, they should report them by calling Trading Standards through the Citizen Advice consumer helpline on 0808 223 1133 or contact HM Revenue & Customs’ Fraud Hotline (0800 788 887), or Crimestoppers (0800 555 111).  

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