In two separate operations since the Bank Holiday weekend, HM Customs Marine Section have arrested four Spanish nationals and seized 900 cartons of cigarettes.
The first occurred on Saturday evening. Following a routine patrol of British Gibraltar Territorial Waters, 200 cartons of cigarettes along with a small white pleasure craft were seized and two Spanish nationals of 35 and 71 years of age were arrested. Both were later released on Police bail until a later date when they are due to appear at New Mole House Police Station.
The second incident took place at around 02:45am this morning, when a rigid inflatable boat was seen loaded with cigarettes. During a chase, the suspect vessel rammed the Customs boat whilst attempting to escape, resulting in slight damage to HMC patrol vessel’s starboard engine. A HM Customs Officer sustained minor injuries to his knee.
The Officers successfully arrested two Spanish nationals and seized the suspect vessel and 700 cartons of cigarettes. Both detainees have been charged and are due to appear tomorrow, Friday 4th April, at the Magistrates Court.