The ArgusScale of damage caused by illegal tobacco to be examined (From The Argus)

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Scale of damage caused by illegal tobacco in Brighton and Hove to be examined

The Argus: Scale of damage caused by illegal tobacco to be examined Scale of damage caused by illegal tobacco to be examined

The damaging effect of the illegal tobacco trade will be discussed by industry figures, politicians and traders today.

The round table forum will be held at the Hilton Brighton Metropole today to analyse the scale of the problem in Brighton and Hove.

In January a special investigation by The Argus found more than half a dozen city shops selling Non-UK duty paid cigarettes and tobacco (NUKDP), including counterfeit goods, to unsuspecting customers.

The trade costs HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) more than £2 billion a year in lost revenue.


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Now officers from HMRC, local businesses and tobacco firm representatives will meet to discuss how to take a stand against the trade and protect legitimate traders in Brighton and Hove.

The event, organised by Independent Retail News, will also be attended by Simon Kirby, MP for Brighton Kemptown, and editor of The Argus Michael Beard.

The Argus surveyed 42 people on their knowledge of the illegal tobacco trade and found half of them were not aware NUKDP tobacco was available in the city.

But shockingly 17 people, 40% of those questioned, said they had been offered NUKDP products. Nearly all of them, 13, admitted to going ahead with the purchase.

Local businesses have described how such purchases are threatening the livelihoods of shop owners selling authentic tobacco products.

Navin Patel, of Southern Cross newsagent in Trafalgar Road, Portslade, said: “Shops are closing down because genuine traders are suffering.

“Cigarettes cost around £8 in England and only £2 abroad. When other shops are selling cheaper goods, it puts a lot of pressure on the legitimate businesses.“I will be attending the forum to see how we can help each other to make a stand and to tell how the problem of illegal tobacco is widespread in Brighton and Hove.”

Trading Standards is currently investigating the retailers identified by The Argus selling illegal tobacco products.

Our story followed raids on the Brighton Racecourse market last year, where 11 stalls were either closed down or abandoned as HMRC and Trading Standards officers seized 1,500 pouches of counterfeit tobacco worth £23,000.

Mark Yexley, of Japan Tobacco International (JTI), said: “JTI is very pleased to be attending the IRN forum in Brighton as ‘cheap illegal tobacco’ is an increasing issue for honest, hardworking and reputable shopkeepers in Brighton.

Comments (6)

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9:16am Fri 2 May 14

cleggandbacon says...

It is our Governments that are to blame for the so-called tobacco smuggling. When we signed up to the Common Market it was supposed to be a level playing with no restrictions put on the ammount of tobacco and alchohol we could bring back from abroad for our own"personal" consumption.
Just another in a long line of government broken promises. The editor of the Argus Mr Beard should raise this when he attends the meeting.
It is our Governments that are to blame for the so-called tobacco smuggling. When we signed up to the Common Market it was supposed to be a level playing with no restrictions put on the ammount of tobacco and alchohol we could bring back from abroad for our own"personal" consumption. Just another in a long line of government broken promises. The editor of the Argus Mr Beard should raise this when he attends the meeting. cleggandbacon
  • Score: 8

9:35am Fri 2 May 14

Max Ripple says...

Want to buy some dodgy cigs and tobacco? Go to The Horse and Groom every Friday at 5pm. Little Chinese woman. Been doing it for years. I can't understand why police haven't done anything about it. Everyone knows it goes on. Openly as well. Maybe they're getting a pay off?......
Want to buy some dodgy cigs and tobacco? Go to The Horse and Groom every Friday at 5pm. Little Chinese woman. Been doing it for years. I can't understand why police haven't done anything about it. Everyone knows it goes on. Openly as well. Maybe they're getting a pay off?...... Max Ripple
  • Score: -5

10:09am Fri 2 May 14

NickBrt says...

Lucas can't be bothered to walk down from Balcombe I see?
Lucas can't be bothered to walk down from Balcombe I see? NickBrt
  • Score: 1

10:48am Fri 2 May 14

Goldenwight says...

Is the damage being done by the counterfeit and smuggled goods trade per se, or by the repeated increases in tobacco duty which have fueled it?

Just like all smuggling trades from people to recreational drugs, all that happens is that you push the profits into the hands of a criminal element thus sacrificing safety, quality control, and any measure of state control.

Drop tobacco duty to lower levels than other EU nations, and we can reverse the trend- just imagine how much extra duty the Treasury would receive, not to mention the savings in time on Customs inspections.
Is the damage being done by the counterfeit and smuggled goods trade per se, or by the repeated increases in tobacco duty which have fueled it? Just like all smuggling trades from people to recreational drugs, all that happens is that you push the profits into the hands of a criminal element thus sacrificing safety, quality control, and any measure of state control. Drop tobacco duty to lower levels than other EU nations, and we can reverse the trend- just imagine how much extra duty the Treasury would receive, not to mention the savings in time on Customs inspections. Goldenwight
  • Score: 4

2:59pm Fri 2 May 14

wippasnapper says...

If its £8 in England and only £2 abroad that means this British government is putting a very high tax on good sold hear so is it any wonder people will buy contraband tobacco from dealers offering it at a reduced sum of money like anything that is contraband if it cost you less your buy it simple as that – this government keep putting up the pries of tobacco if they truthfully wanted people to stop duo to heath reasons they would ban the sale of it in this country but if the truth be known they want ban it because they earn a grate deal in tax revenue from it and megacity of shops in Brighton only sell 25gs & 12gs packets when most people want to buy 50gs packs i.e. buying 25gs every time cost use more so it’s the shops problem for not giving the customer the chains to buy 50s instead of 25s and if I have a past PORT I would go buy my monthly in Europe saving my self a fortune plus having a nice day out o’ and wile we are on it some people buy the monthly shopping abroad because its cheaper than buying it in the UK so I say more of use ort to do it!
If its £8 in England and only £2 abroad that means this British government is putting a very high tax on good sold hear so is it any wonder people will buy contraband tobacco from dealers offering it at a reduced sum of money like anything that is contraband if it cost you less your buy it simple as that – this government keep putting up the pries of tobacco if they truthfully wanted people to stop duo to heath reasons they would ban the sale of it in this country but if the truth be known they want ban it because they earn a grate deal in tax revenue from it and megacity of shops in Brighton only sell 25gs & 12gs packets when most people want to buy 50gs packs i.e. buying 25gs every time cost use more so it’s the shops problem for not giving the customer the chains to buy 50s instead of 25s and if I have a past PORT I would go buy my monthly in Europe saving my self a fortune plus having a nice day out o’ and wile we are on it some people buy the monthly shopping abroad because its cheaper than buying it in the UK so I say more of use ort to do it! wippasnapper
  • Score: 1

1:09am Mon 5 May 14

Wide Bertha says...

wippasnapper wrote:
If its £8 in England and only £2 abroad that means this British government is putting a very high tax on good sold hear so is it any wonder people will buy contraband tobacco from dealers offering it at a reduced sum of money like anything that is contraband if it cost you less your buy it simple as that – this government keep putting up the pries of tobacco if they truthfully wanted people to stop duo to heath reasons they would ban the sale of it in this country but if the truth be known they want ban it because they earn a grate deal in tax revenue from it and megacity of shops in Brighton only sell 25gs & 12gs packets when most people want to buy 50gs packs i.e. buying 25gs every time cost use more so it’s the shops problem for not giving the customer the chains to buy 50s instead of 25s and if I have a past PORT I would go buy my monthly in Europe saving my self a fortune plus having a nice day out o’ and wile we are on it some people buy the monthly shopping abroad because its cheaper than buying it in the UK so I say more of use ort to do it!
next time you go, see if you can't pick up a cheap dictionary
[quote][p][bold]wippasnapper[/bold] wrote: If its £8 in England and only £2 abroad that means this British government is putting a very high tax on good sold hear so is it any wonder people will buy contraband tobacco from dealers offering it at a reduced sum of money like anything that is contraband if it cost you less your buy it simple as that – this government keep putting up the pries of tobacco if they truthfully wanted people to stop duo to heath reasons they would ban the sale of it in this country but if the truth be known they want ban it because they earn a grate deal in tax revenue from it and megacity of shops in Brighton only sell 25gs & 12gs packets when most people want to buy 50gs packs i.e. buying 25gs every time cost use more so it’s the shops problem for not giving the customer the chains to buy 50s instead of 25s and if I have a past PORT I would go buy my monthly in Europe saving my self a fortune plus having a nice day out o’ and wile we are on it some people buy the monthly shopping abroad because its cheaper than buying it in the UK so I say more of use ort to do it![/p][/quote]next time you go, see if you can't pick up a cheap dictionary Wide Bertha
  • Score: 0

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