Customs officers seized more than 30,000 euros at the Portel. - French Customs
- A resident of Portel suspected of tobacco trafficking was arrested by customs officers.
- In three years of illegal business, he has sold nearly two tonnes of tobacco.
- Without a profession, his activity earned him between 30,000 and 50,000 euros.
Small business that paid off big. A month ago, a long-term investigation by customs officers in Pas-de-Calais made it possible to dismantle illicit tobacco resale trafficking, we learned on Thursday. A man was arrested.
After having conducted their investigation since February 2020, the customs officers of Boulogne-sur-Mer obtained, on June 26, an order from a judge to search the home of a 54-year-old man living the Portel. The suspect was indeed suspected of illicitly reselling, on social networks, tobacco bought at a low price in Belgium and Luxembourg.
Between 36,000 euros and 54,000 euros in profits
According to Customs, the searches were successful, the agents having found in the man “9,620 kg of tobacco intended for resale as well as a sum of 30,526 euros coming directly from trafficking. The officials also seized "two electric machines used to make cigarettes." "
Placed in police custody, the suspect admitted “carrying out this tobacco trafficking for three years. "He also estimated that, over this period, he had sold" a minimum of 1,728 kg of tobacco and cigarettes. “After deducting the purchase price of the goods, the respondent estimated the profit made between 36,000 and 54,000 euros. The customs officers assure that part of the money had been used to finance the trips and the purchase of cars of this man without profession.
Customs also specifies that “the amount of unpaid duties defrauded on this contested tobacco amounts to 378,253 euros. The man was released. While it is certain that the suspect will be the subject of administrative proceedings, the Boulogne-sur-Mer prosecutor's office and Customs have not yet decided on possible legal proceedings. In this case, "the penalties incurred for this type of traffic are a prison sentence of up to one year as well as a fine of between 1 and 3 times the amount of tax evaded".
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