A 49-year-old suspect was arrested by the Hawks’ Serious Commercial Crime Investigation on 3 May 2023 in Potchefstroom for smuggling illicit cigarettes worth over R7.8 million rand.
The team was following up on information regarding a large consignment of illicit cigarettes that was reportedly being transported in a gas tanker truck from Buffelshoek to Potchefstroom.
The truck was spotted and searched and 482 master cases containing 50 cartons of illicit Chelsea cigarettes were discovered. Additionally, in separate compartment,109 master cases containing 25 cartons were also found.
All the cigarettes and the gas tanker truck were seized for further investigation.
Meanwhile, the suspect will make his first appearance before Potchefstroom Magistrate’s Court on 5 May 2023, where he will be facing charges of possession of illicit cigarettes and contravention of the Customs and Excise Act 91 of 1964.
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