Third of tobacco smuggling convictions imposed on international criminals

Dublin tops 2012 convictions table, followed by Cork

Customs officers examine a haul of cigarettes seized by the national drugs team, discovered on board a vessel that arrived in Dublin from Latvia. Photograph: Eric Luke

Customs officers examine a haul of cigarettes seized by the national drugs team, discovered on board a vessel that arrived in Dublin from Latvia. Photograph: Eric Luke

Tue, Apr 2, 2013, 05:00

A third of convictions in Ireland for illegal tobacco smuggling in 2012 were imposed on international smugglers, according to the list of defaulters from the Revenue Commissioners.

There were 55 people prosecuted in Ireland in 2012 for smuggling tobacco into the State and 18 of these had home addresses outside of Ireland.

Among those convicted were a Latvian man who got a two-month custodial sentence, and smugglers from Bulgaria, Poland, Moldova and China, who got shorter prison sentences.

The figures showed there were 124 convictions in Ireland in 2012 related to illegal tobacco, 55 for smuggling and 69 for selling.


Convictions table
Dublin topped the convictions table for 2012 with 34, followed by Cork, which recorded 14 convictions last year.

Limerick was next with 11 convictions, while Galway and Louth both recorded seven convictions each in 2012.

Figures by research agency MS Intelligence showed the rate of non-Irish duty paid tobacco in Waterford was the highest in Ireland at more than 33 per cent but despite this, the county only had four convictions last year.

The average fine for illegal tobacco sellers in 2012 was €2,706.