Police seize illicit alcohol from Lancashire stores

By Lesley Foottit

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Alcoholic beverage, Hmrc, Hm revenue

Duty fraud: police action
Duty fraud: police action
Over 1,000 litres of illegally imported beer and spirits were seized during a crack down on Lancashire off-licences. Among the goods taken from...

Over 1,000 litres of illegally imported beer and spirits were seized during a crack down on Lancashire off-licences.

Among the goods taken from stores in Morecambe were 972 litres of beer, 33.75 litres of wine, 14 litres of vodka, 3.5 litres of whisky and 2,060 cigarettes.

A number of immigration offences were also discovered and will be investigated by the UK Border Agency.

Lancashire Constabulary's licensing team and officers from the Ports Unit and HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) targeted off-licences in the town's West End area.

"Violent crime is often fuelled by drink and we continually work towards making licensees and their staff more aware of their responsibilities when it comes to selling alcohol," said licensing officer PC Graeme Cheetham.

"Shops that sell illicit alcohol usually do so at a knock down price — and pay scant regard to making a responsible sale.

"This can then lead to an increase in anti-social behaviour, criminal damage and violent behaviour which is why we are working with these other agencies to crack down on this problem."

HMRC special investigations manager Graham Forbes added: "Smugglers and counterfeiters cheat the country of revenue vital to funding public services like hospitals and schools. This illicit trade also has a devastating impact on honest retailers."

Related topics: Licensing law, Legislation

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