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Tobacco seized in raids across Morecambe

From left: Helen Evans and Milo the dog from Wagtail UK Ltd, Julie Waddington from Lancashire County Council Trading Standards.

From left: Helen Evans and Milo the dog from Wagtail UK Ltd, Julie Waddington from Lancashire County Council Trading Standards.

Sniffer dogs helped Lancashire County Council Trading Standards Service seize contraband tobacco in raids across Morecambe.

Twenty four packs of contraband tobacco products were seized after six retail premises were visited by Trading Standards and a sniffer dog.

Raids around the county are continuing, with a haul of over 400 illegal packs of cigarettes, tobacco and tobacco blunts seized so far.

The low price and easy availability of illegal tobacco encourages people to keep smoking, and children and young people are often targeted by unscrupulous traders.

The dogs help to find tobacco which unscrupulous traders often conceal in unusual places such as hidden compartments and seemingly-empty product boxes.

They were provided by Wagtail UK Ltd which supply detection dogs to a range of agencies.

County Councillor Janice Hanson, cabinet member for public protection, said: “We regularly act on intelligence received from the public, and the success of this week’s operation shows that even the smallest piece of intelligence can make all the difference.

“It also demonstrates that more and more people are beginning to understand the serious threat that illegal tobacco poses to our communities and, just as tellingly, that fewer and fewer people are prepared to tolerate it.

“The highly trained tobacco dogs leave no hiding places for those who trade in illegal tobacco, making them a valuable contribution to the armoury of our Trading Standards Service.”

Anyone with information about the sale of illegal tobacco should call the Citizens Advice consumer helpline on 08454 04 05 06 or the confidential Crimestoppers hotline on 0800 555 111.

 

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