Crackdown on illegal tobacco at Melbourne Airport

Multiple people arrested for importing illicit tobacco in their luggage.

Multiple people have been arrested and charged for importing illicit tobacco products in their luggage at Melbourne Airport.

Australian Border Force officers have been conducting Operation SILVERCHALICE, which is directed at aviation travellers working as “tobacco mules” importing illicit cigarettes in their suitcases and bags.

Over the course of the investigation, ABF officers have identified suspicious travellers who were then subjected to examination upon their arrival into Melbourne Airport’s international terminal.

Officers found illicit cigarette sticks in multiple suitcases, a common method used by smugglers to bring illicit products into Australia.

A 38-year-old man was ordered to pay fines and costs of $100,000 after he was convicted of multiple offences connected to the smuggling of more than 50,000 illegal cigarettes.

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