In the past week, HM Customs has worked jointly with other agencies in separate operations where a vehicle, a vessel, communications equipment and over £17,000 worth of cigarettes were seized.
In the early hours of Tuesday morning (Nov 13th), Customs Officers working with the assistance of the Gibraltar Defence Police conducted an area search around British Lines Road and the Frontier Fence. This resulted in the detection of 250 cartons of cigarettes concealed in the area.
In an unrelated incident HM Customs Marine Unit deployed Interceptor RhIB HMC Searcher on Saturday Nov 17th after being given a tip-off of a suspect vessel in the Bay of Gibraltar. At around 10pm, following joint monitoring of the vessel, HMC Searcher began a chase heading south within British Gibraltar Territorial Waters and apprehended the vessel and two crew around 2 Nautical Miles (3.7km) South of Europa Point. The 7.5m RhIB was found to contain over 200 litres of fuel in drums and was powered by a 300Hp engine. It was seized as a prohibited import. A 31-year old local man and a 44 year old Spanish national from La Linea were arrested for Imports and Exports Act Offences.
In another case, officers of HM Customs arrested a 37-year old Spanish National from La Linea during a Customs interdiction operation. The man was identified driving a vehicle in the Devil’s Tower Road area in the early hours of Wednesday Nov 14th. The driver was signalled to stop but failed to do so. A vehicle chase around the area ensued which resulted in the suspect colliding with scaffold and being brought to a halt. No injuries were sustained in the incident. The Spanish registered car was searched and found to contain 600 cartons with a value of over £12,000. The vehicle and contents were seized by HMC.
HM Customs has said it continues to investigate all three incidents.