Bow cigarette smuggler jailed for two months

A man who attempted to smuggle more than 40,000 cigarettes into the UK, has been jailed for two months.

Abdul Shelim, 33, of Westport Street, Stepney, was stopped by customs officals after arriving on a flight to Heathrow airport from Bangladesh with 40,020 Benson & Hedges King Size Filter cigarettes in three suitcases on June 9.

The father-of-one pleaded guilty to one count of tobacco smuggling in accordance with the Customs and Excise Management Act 1979 and was sentenced at the Old Bailey on November 19.

The revenue loss on the goods is £12,783.

Jennie Kendall, spokeswomen for HMRC, said: ”Tobacco smuggling robs the tax payer of around £2 billion a year, money that should be funding public services.

“The illicit trade has a devastating impact on legitimate retailers and the local community.

“We will always look to prosecute, where appropriate, so justice can be served.

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“Shelim has found out the hard way that crime doesn’t pay.”

Anyone with information regarding tobacco and alcohol smuggling and fraud can call the Customs Hotline on 0800 59 5000.