More than 60,000 illegal cigarettes seized during Tower Hamlet raid

Illegal tobacco worth more than £28,000 has been seized during a two-day raid. 

Officers from Tower Hamlet Council’s Trading Standards team were joined by sniffer dogs Pippa and Rex to uncover the counterfeit and illicit tobacco from containers and shops in the borough. 

The biggest haul was found in a container near to Chrisp Street Market, where officers seized 40,000 illicit cigarettes and 23,680 counterfeit cigarettes, as well as hand-rolled and smuggled tobacco. 

Lead member for environment and climate Councillor Kabir Hussain added: “Illegal and counterfeit tobacco are a real issue in our community, and we must work together to stamp it out. 

“I encourage everyone to report any suspected sales to our Trading Standards team so we can take the appropriate action and keep our communities safe.” 

During the operation, the Trading Standards team also targeted shops illegally selling vape liquid and nitrous oxide. 

They seized 200 bottles of a type of vaping liquid which is banned in this country due to its strength, and 26 1.5kg cylinders and 250 canisters of nitrous oxide, commonly known as laughing gas, which can lead users to suffocate or experience permanent nerve damage. 

Trading Standards carries out regular raids which target sales of illegal tobacco, nitrous oxide and illegal vaping liquids. 

To report someone for selling any of these products, email tradingstandards@towerhamlets.gov.uk 

Alternatively, you can use our reporting form on this website by clicking this link.

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