More than £1,000 worth of suspected counterfeit cigarettes and tobacco products were seized in a raid this morning (Tuesday, August 13).
East Sussex Trading Standards said the seizure was a result of a tip-off by a member of the public at one of its public events it is holding this week to raise awareness about the effects of smoking on health and illegal tobacco products.
A spokesman said: “Acting on information provided, our officers attended a convenience store in Hastings today.
“We found around 120 packets of cigarettes and 65 pouches of hand-rolling tobacco concealed in a cupboard and under the floor.
“Brands included Mayfair, Richmond, Golden Virginia and Amber Leaf, and included suspected counterfeit products, as well as genuine items not bearing the required health warning.
“The items have an estimated street value of around £1,300. The owner of the store will be interviewed and the matter will be investigated in line with our enforcement policy.
“We’re really grateful to the member of the public who made us aware of alleged illegal tobacco sales at this store.
“This is a great result and highlights how the information people provide to us has a direct impact and the huge role the public can play in helping us to crack down on this unscrupulous trade.”
Anyone with information about illegal tobacco sales is urged to report it by calling the illegal tobacco helpline on 0300 999 6999 or online at www.stop-illegal-tobacco.co.uk.
East Sussex Trading Standards is holding more public events this week as part of Tobacco Awareness Week tomorrow (Wednesday, August 14) at Bexhill in Devonshire Square, and on Thursday (August 15) and Friday (August 16) outside Debenhams in Hastings.
The events run from 10am to 4pm each day.
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