Europe South Asia Asia Pacific Americas Middle East Africa BBC Homepage World Service Education



Front Page

World

UK

UK Politics

Business

Sci/Tech

Health

Education

Sport

Entertainment

Talking Point
On Air
Feedback
Low Graphics
Help

Monday, October 12, 1998 Published at 02:10 GMT 03:10 UK


UK

Duty-free smuggling at a glance

In May 1997 - before the World Cup - 10,000 vans crossed the Channel

  • The amount of beer coming across the channel each day equals the weekly sales of 1,000 British pubs.
  • In 1997 it was estimated that the tax man had been cheated out of £23m of duty in eight months after a gang of six men were arrested
  • The average British pub landlord is estimated to lose £3,225 in beer sales to bootlegging every year
  • When the European Single Market came into effect in 1993 it was wrongly assumed that the other EU countries would adopt similar duty rates.
  • Ellis Martin was sentenced to six years and 10 months imprisonment in 1996 after he smuggled nearly 9,000,000 cans of extra strong lager
  • Martin masterminded the biggest cross-Channel smuggling operation which cost the Inland Revenue £5m
  • In the run up to this summer's World Cup 10,000 vans crossed the Channel in May - the highest number since the introduction of the single market in 1993
  • In a pre-Christmas crackdown in 1996, 500 customs officers raided 100 business and homes throughout the UK in connection with an alleged multi-million pound fraud and made 40 arrests.

    Siezed in the past year by Customs and Excise:

    • £35.56m of drugs in southern England
    • £2.6m revenue worth of alcohol, tobacco and cigarettes
    • 47 vehicles involved in revenue smuggling
    • 487 seizures of indecent or obscene material, firearms and ammunition, endangered species and other restricted or prohibited items
    • Also identified were 62 cases of VAT avoidance were involving a potential revenue loss of £9.5 million




    Advanced options | Search tips




    Back to top | BBC News Home | BBC Homepage | ©


  • UK Contents

    Northern Ireland
    Scotland
    Wales
    England

    Relevant Stories

    11 Oct 98†|†UK
    Xmas crackdown on smugglers





    In this section

    Next steps for peace

    Blairs' surprise over baby

    Bowled over by Lord's

    Beef row 'compromise' under fire

    Hamilton 'would sell mother'

    Industry misses new trains target

    From Sport
    Quins fightback shocks Cardiff

    From Business
    Vodafone takeover battle heats up

    IRA ceasefire challenge rejected

    Thousands celebrate Asian culture

    From Sport
    Christie could get two-year ban

    From Entertainment
    Colleagues remember Compo

    Mother pleads for baby's return

    Toys withdrawn in E.coli health scare

    From Health
    Nurses role set to expand

    Israeli PM's plane in accident

    More lottery cash for grassroots

    Pro-lifers plan shock launch

    Double killer gets life

    From Health
    Cold 'cure' comes one step closer

    From UK Politics
    Straw on trial over jury reform

    Tatchell calls for rights probe into Mugabe

    Ex-spy stays out in the cold

    From UK Politics
    Blair warns Livingstone

    From Health
    Smear equipment `misses cancers'

    From Entertainment
    Boyzone star gets in Christmas spirit

    Fake bubbly warning

    Murder jury hears dead girl's diary

    From UK Politics
    Germ warfare fiasco revealed

    Blair babe triggers tabloid frenzy

    Tourists shot by mistake

    A new look for News Online