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March 2017

Organised crime syndicates smuggling ‘low risk’ tobacco leaf and cigarettes into Australia

From: Clear The Air News Tobacco Blog


“Those who were sending drugs are now involved, because the profit is there. We will recognise the mail coming through as being from the same criminal syndicate … over the last 12 months with tobacco we are actually seeing the exporters using the methodologies we would normally see with drugs.”


Most of the illicit cigarettes, some of which ends up on the shelves of legitimate corner shops, is from South Korea, Japan, China and Hong Kong while loose leaf is mostly from Indonesia and the Middle East.

BAT may close South Africa cigarette plant

From: Business Report

Thembisile Dzonzi and Loni Prinsloo

Johannesburg – British American Tobacco said it may close South Africa’s only cigarette plant if plans to ban branded tobacco packaging are implemented.


Plain packaging threatens the closure of the factory and “poses a threat to the viability of the legal tobacco industry in South Africa,” Heshu said. The move will make it harder to distinguish the cigarettes from black-market cigarettes and “the illegal market will benefit from having a cheaper product,” he said.

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