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Queensland shop raided over suspicion of selling alleged illegal tobacco

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A Bundaberg store has been raided as a part of a multi-agency investigation into alleged unlawful tobacco buying and selling.

The Bundy Tobacconist was closed on Wednesday, as officers from the Large Bay Public Well being Unit and Queensland Police Service (QPS) carried out a search of the premises.

Dozens of packing containers of tobacco-related merchandise had been seized and faraway from the retail retailer.

A spokesperson from Queensland Well being confirmed the operation was associated to the alleged sale of unlawful tobacco. 

“We lately collaborated with the Queensland Police Service and the Australian Taxation Workplace to focus on illegal cultivation and sale of unlawful tobacco as a part of Operation Romeo Serge,” the spokesperson mentioned.

It’s understood no expenses have been laid or enforcement motion taken in direction of the enterprise.

tobacco raid
Queensland Police assisted in eradicating packing containers of seized product from the retail retailer.(ABC Large Bay: Johanna Marie)

Tip-offs result in busts

“We proceed to work intently with key stakeholders, together with retail teams and our companion businesses, as a part of Australia’s inter-agency tobacco management response,” the Queensland Well being spokesperson mentioned.

A sign saying Bundy Tobacconist outside a shop
Bundy Tobacconist was closed on Wednesday.(ABC Large Bay: Johanna Marie)

In 2018, greater than $60 million worth of illegally grown tobacco was seized from farms within the Bundaberg area.

Police had been initially alerted to the unscrupulous operations by means of a sequence of tip-offs from members of the neighborhood.

“In case you suspect that illicit tobacco is grown, manufactured or offered, you may report it anonymously to the ATO,” the Queensland Well being spokesperson mentioned.

“Reporting it ensures the businesses concerned can goal enforcement efforts to the place they’re most required.”

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