German police bust illegal tobacco factory, seizing 26 million cigarettes
German police bust illegal cigarette factory in Sauerland
Customs investigators, working together with the public prosecutor’s office, uncovered the illegal factory in Brilon, Focus reports. During a raid on Monday this week, investigators seized more than 26 million illegally-produced cigarettes as well as tons of other materials and tobacco.
The factory is thought to have been operating since this spring.
Counterfeit cigarettes worth 5 million euros in taxes
Authorities said that the counterfeit cigarettes, which were due to be sold profitably on the black market in Germany and across Europe without paying the associated taxes, amounted to a tax loss of 5 million euros.
According to the public prosecutor's office, a total of 20 residential and business premises in the Rhineland, Ruhr and Sauerland regions were raided on Monday. An investigation, which also involves Europol, is underway against several suspects who are accused of committing commercial tax fraud.
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