29/05/2003

Customs officers in Belfast and Armagh fuel seizures

Customs officers have seized illegal fuel and two vehicles used for transporting fuel in Co Armagh.

In a joint operation with the PSNI, customs also seized in excess of 110,000 litres of fuel and closed two fuel retail sites in Belfast.

The seizures were part of an ongoing operation targeting the sale of illegal fuel in the greater Belfast area.

In a separate operation Customs uncovered a fuel laundering plant in farm buildings near to Camlough on Tuesday. The site had a weekly capacity to launder 10,000 litres of diesel and would have produced an annual revenue loss of almost £250,000.

Commenting on the finds, Customs’ Senior Investigation Officer John Whiting said: “These operations have stopped a substantial amount of harmful fuel entering the legitimate fuel market and damaging honest trade.

“This Customs/PSNI operation shows the benefit of multi-agency working as part of the Organised Crime Task Force."

Mr Whiting urged members of the public to contact their freephone hotline 0800 595000 if they saw any suspicious activities in their area at any time.

(MB)

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