Customs Seize 38 Million Cigarettes 12 April 2012

Officers from Revenue’s Customs Service today (12/04/12) seized 38 million cigarettes which were imported into Dublin Port in four forty-foot maritime containers. The cigarettes seized have a retail value of €14.7m with a potential loss to the Exchequer of €13.1m.

The “Golden Eagiie” brand cigarettes, which originated in Vietnam and arrived into Dublin Port via Rotterdam, were described as ‘wood briquettes’ on the manifest and were consigned to an Irish-based company. Approximately 9.5m cigarettes were seized from each of the four containers which travelled on one Bill of Lading.

The containers were selected for x-ray scan based on risk profiling conducted by Customs. The scans showed an anomaly in the contents of the containers, resulting in further inspection. Boxes of wood pellets were used as the cover load.

Revenue Commissioner Liam Irwin said

“This seizure, which was the result of profiling by Revenue’s Customs Service, is a significant blow to the criminals involved in this illicit trade. Tobacco smuggling is organised fraud on a global scale – it brings criminality into our communities and robs millions of euro from the State each year.”


Several individuals were interviewed and a premises was searched under warrant. Documents seized as part of the investigation are currently being examined.

Investigations are ongoing nationally and internationally.

If businesses or members of the public have any information regarding the smuggling or sale of illegal cigarettes, they can contact Revenue in confidence on free phone number 1800 295 295.


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