NEWS

Tons of illegal tobacco, cigarettes seized in police operation

YIANNIS SOULIOTIS

TAGS: Crime

More than 128 tons of illegal tobacco and tobacco products worth an estimated 5.5 million euros were seized in a wide-scale operation spanning three regions of the country, the Greek Police (ELAS) said Friday.

The operation in Attica, Viotia and Fthiotida also led to the arrest of 10 men – all ethnic Greeks from the former Soviet Union – who are suspected of working for a large contraband tobacco gang that produced and sold illegal cigarettes on the black market.

Eight of the suspects were arrested in a fully equipped illegal production plant in Atalanti in Fthiotida, while the other two are thought to have more important roles in the gang’s hierarchy and to have worked as lookouts at the gang’s three warehouses.

Three more people suspected of working as drivers for the gang are being sought, along with the people whose names were on the leases of the four properties raided in the July 31 operation.

The operation was carried out by ELAS’ drug enforcement agency acting on information that one of the three warehouses that were raided contained illegal narcotics.

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