European commission — olaf — two charged in spain for smuggling 70 million cigarettes

In an investigation coordinated by the European Anti Fraud Office (OLAF), Spanish Customs, Vigilancia Aduanera, has seized 50 million cigarettes suspected to have been destined for the illicit market in the EU. In addition to the 50 million cigarettes seized, two further containers with 20 million cigarettes ordered by the same criminal gang were identified.

Customs authorities in Spain initially seized 4 containers of cigarettes (40 million) and, during the investigation that followed, were able to seize a further 10 million cigarettes.

«The shipping containers were declared to be carrying humanitarian aid on the customs documents that accompanied them» said Nicholas Ilett, acting Director General of OLAF «This case demonstrates the extent to which criminals will sink in their attempts to make a profit. This is a great result for Spanish Customs, and for French and Greek customs which assisted with the investigation. It is also a great result for OLAF and European taxpayers because the loss of some 10 million has been prevented».

The suspicions of Spanish Customs were first aroused because of the unusual routing of the containers. The 10 month investigation which followed uncovered a series of transactions and brass plate companies, as well as several false documents which had been presented to customs authorities. OLAF coordinated EU missions to Greece and Dubai with the Spanish investigators in order to obtain the evidence necessary to bring the case before the Spanish Courts.

Two people have been indicted by the criminal court in Spain in relation to this case. Under Spanish law, smuggling charges can be brought in relation to all 7 containers of cigarettes.

Head of Unit Spokesman, Communication, Public Relations
European Anti Fraud Office (OLAF)
Rue Joseph II, 30 B 1049 Brussels (Belgium)
Phone 32 2 296 72 00
Fax 32 2 2998101
E mail olaf press : variety of european cigarettes

Smoking cigarettes is very popular among various people, regardless of age, country or the health risk that might smoke cause. Teenagers, women and men are all as well smoking the most popular types of cigarettes the advertised brands. More Menthol cigarettes is as popular as other cheapest cigarettes coming from the European countries. Although smokers can find large variety of smokes in the marketplaces nowadays, they’re all basically of the same composition with a few changes in dimensions, flavors and design of packs.

All cigarettes have the same components which consist of filtration system supplies, cigarette papers, and flavorings along with papers periodontal. Cigarettes are cheaper inside Europe because they are generally obtainable in reduced charges because the price within manufacturing of tobacco and can be significantly less than the expenses accrued within production and trading of same cigarettes in USA.

Additionally to this particular, the smokes manufactured in European countries are basically produced and transported through the duty totally free zones to other countries. It is because these types of tobacco are available almost tax free, even whilst introducing shipping costs. However due to actual import obligation from the various countries that individuals have a tendency to smuggle in inexpensive tobacco through the European Union to save on the tobacco cost.

Some modifications tend to be related to preservative chemicals which are added to the cigarettes, and the shelf duration. European kent cigarettes can be easily bought online and are usually routed simply by authorized post mail to their final destination, also it takes several weeks for the tobacco to arrive at it’s actually vacation spot. This leads to a change within the style as well as feel with the smokes. There are too few smokers who can make out the distinction between European cigarettes and those manufactures in US.

Published Wednesday, June 08, 2011

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