Cigs: Pakistani bust in PMB

2009-12-07 00:00

IN a combined sting operation late on Friday night, SARS customs, Midlands Highway Patrol, Midlands Dog Unit and the Pietermaritzburg Crime Intelligence Unit swooped on a Pakistani national and seized illegal cigarettes stored in an outbuilding in Hayfields, with a street value of nearly R5 million.

The man has been charged with possession of smuggled cigarettes.

It is believed the smuggling of illegal cigarettes is costing the country more than R3 billion in lost revenue.

The bust, believed to be the biggest so far, netted 500 cases.

The Witness also learnt last night that the Pakastani national has been in South Africa for 14 years and was convicted in 2002 under the Medicines Control Act after being arrested at the O.R. Tambo Airport.

The man will appear in the Magistrates Court today.

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