NEWS

Cigarette smuggling arrests

Police in Attica have broken a criminal ring that allegedly smuggled millions of contraband cigarettes to Britain hidden inside armored doors. Three Greeks have been arrested on suspicion of participation in the gang, police said on Saturday, while a fourth Greek has been charged. So has a British national who had allegedly been due to take delivery of the shipments in the UK – where cigarettes are much more heavily taxed than in Greece. Police said the three detainees, whose names were not made public, were all ethnic Greeks from the former Soviet Union. They were arrested in the Athens district of Kallithea on Friday, during a raid in which police seized 14,500 packs of British-made cigarettes together with fake invoices in the name of real companies and rubber stamps with the particulars of fictitious firms. A second search in Magoula, near Aspropyrgos some 20 kilometers west of Athens, turned up 30 armored doors in which a total of 18,900 cigarette packs were concealed. Police believe the ring had sent at least 10 consignments to Britain over the past four months.