Illegal vapes and contraband tobacco worth more than £15,000 were seized during a series of raids across Bolton.
According to local reports, the seizure followed six raids – two commercial properties and four homes on Halliwell Road in the Astley Bridge area of Bolton – executed jointly by Greater Manchester Police and Bolton Council on Thursday (7) night.
Acting on intelligence provided by the community, officials seized 570 ‘non-compliant’ vapes, contraband cigarettes and 1.3 kilos of hand-rolled cigarettes found in a BMW, which was towed away.
Bolton Council’s executive cabinet member for regulatory services, Coun Sue Haworth, said: “This was a successful joint operation with officers from our trading standards, housing standards, licensing, food hygiene and dog control teams, all working closely with the police.
The raid was the result of months of careful planning and intelligence gathering, which highlights our commitment to clamping down on illegal sales.
“The goods seized include non-compliant vapes, illicit tobacco and nitrous oxide, all of which pose a significant risk to public health. The operation was a great example of partnership working and has sent a clear message that we will not tolerate the sale of illicit products that put the safety of our communities at risk.”
Inspector Lisa Clarke, of GMP’s Bolton North neighbourhood team, said: “These warrants were as a result of the involvement of a number of our partner agencies, working closely together to achieve some really good results.
“But this wouldn’t have been possible without the intelligence we received from the local community. They have shared their concerns with us, we have listened and we have taken action to address those concerns. An investigation has now been launched into the illegal vapes, cigarettes and nitrous oxide gas cannisters and we are following lines of enquiry.