Monthly Archives: February 2015

Mysterious freighter Mesogio arrested in Greece. Some secrets of contraband cigarettes industry

From: FleetMon

Greek Coast Guard and law enforcement agency or agencies intercepted Tanzania-flagged general cargo vessel Mesogio in Messinian Gulf, Greece, and took her to Kalamata port, reportedly on Feb 20. 6 crew were arrested. A big shipment of contraband cigarettes was found on board, see pic. Sailing records of the vessel are rather mysterious. According to one AIS source, on Feb 16 vessel was in Crimean waters, but according to Greek Coast Guard photos, vessel is in Kalamata, all right, no doubt about it. In recent AIS records only one port is listed – Varna, Bulgaria. Vessel’s history contains other names and other flags, including Ukrainian flag. I have an information from law enforcement agency of one of Eastern European countries, that literally, hundreds of seafarers, mainly of Ukrainian and other Eastern Europe nationalities, were sentenced in Europe during last 2-3 years for cigarettes contraband trafficking. The whole story goes deeper than just that….

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Suspected illicit tobacco seized in West Auckland ice cream van raid



TWO people have been arrested after more than 4,500 cigarettes and 20kg of hand rolling tobacco was seized in raid on an ice cream van known to park outside primary schools.

Trading Standards officers from Durham County Council and Durham Police made the discovery when they searched the van, which was at its storage location on a farm at West Auckland near Bishop Auckland, as part of a clampdown on illicit tobacco.

The raid, in which a man and woman were arrested, was carried out on Wednesday (February 25) following tip-offs the suspected counterfeit cigarettes were being sold from the van parked near primary schools in County Durham.

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Horacio Cartes, el patrón del tabaco

Editor’s Note: Via Google Translate, original here.

From: Nova Paraguay
According to research the daily Gazeta de Povo, Cartes is the largest smuggler of South America.

According to research the daily Gazeta de Povo, Cartes is the largest smuggler of South America.

According to research by the Brazilian journalists Mauri Koni and Diego Antonelli (Gazeta do Povo) cigarette has replaced drug trafficking as a catalyst for political power in Paraguay. President Horacio Cartes now occupies the position Alfredo Stroessner was still the biggest winner for cigarette smuggling in Latin America.

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Continued cigarette smuggling on the roads of La Guajira

Editor’s Note: Via Google Translate, orginal, “Continúa el contrabando de cigarrillo en las carreteras de La Guajira,” here.

From: RCN Radio (Columbia)

Foto:  Suministrada Polfa Photo: Supplied Polfa

By checkpoint conducted by staff of the Fiscal and Customs Police, assigned to the division of  management and operational control Riohacha, the seizure of a shipment of  contraband worth five million 450 thousand pesos, cigarettes of foreign origin was performed.

As reported by the customs authorities of the department, the checkpoint was located on the main road from Maicao to Riohacha, five kilometer ; point at which managed to intercept a vehicle plate FCF-724 brand Dogge, red color, model 1980, which apparently had an irregular cargo.

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Moises Naim discusses his book Illicit: How Smugglers, Traffickers and Copycats are Hijacking the Global Economy (Politics & Prose: 2005)

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