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Nick Me Baby, One More Crime

Authorities have uncovered find illegal vapes in spy film style hiding places in Huddersfield, South Kirkby and South Elmsall

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Authorities have uncovered illegal tobacco and vapes worth thousands of pounds stored in spy film style hidden hatches in Huddersfield. In part of coordinated swoops, officers also conducted a test purchase operation at a number of retailers in South Elmsall and South Kirkby, seizing illegal vapes worth over £5,000 from a shop in South Kirkby

The Huddersfield Town Centre Team and West Yorkshire Trading Standards say that enquires remain ongoing after officers found hundreds of packets of illegal cigarettes and vapes stored behind a false wall in a Huddersfield retailers.

The seizure followed on from the discovery of more than £100,000 of carefully concealed illegal and “potentially dangerous” tobacco in Dewsbury last October.

Contraband from those raids was founds stored in locations including a hinged wall hidden behind a bathroom mirror and a concealed cupboard hidden behind a false fuse board.

In the latest seizure in Huddersfield officers found illegal materials concealed within a false wall, with access gained via a disguised electrically controlled hatch.

A total of 144 packets of cigarettes were found in Thursday’s operation as well as 231 illegal vapes and a number of large packets of rolling tobacco.

Police and trading standards officers have now recovered significant quantities of recovered illegal tobacco and vape goods in a series of operations over the last 12 months.

Officers say: “It known that proceeds from the sale of illegal tobacco and vapes can be used to fund organised criminal enterprise.

Inspector Mark Pattinson of Kirklees Police said: “People may see the sale of illegal cigarettes as not as harmful as other types of criminality, but it is well proven that money raised from illegal tobacco sales can be used to directly fund organised crime.

“These illegal products can also be more harmful to public health due to lack of regulation and testing, and it is important we act to restrict their sales.

“In this latest operation officers discovered a significant quantity of illegal cigarettes, tobacco and vapes inside the premises which the owners had attempted to conceal within a false wall, with access gained via a disguised electrically controlled hatch.”

He added: “All of the illegal items were seized by trading standards and will be destroyed.  None of us want to see organised crime in our neighbourhoods and I encourage residents to keep contacting us with any information which can help us disrupt criminal activity and the sale of illegal goods.

“Reports can be given to the Trading Standards Confidential reporting system at or via independent crime prevention charity Crime Stoppers on 0800555111

Meanwhile, during a test purchasing operation, 5,159 illegal vapes were seized at a store in South Kirkby, estimated to be worth around £75k. Nitrous oxide and counterfeit cigarettes were also seized by officers.

Inspector Glen Costello, of the Wakefield East Neighbourhood Policing Team, said: “This activity demonstrates the commitment of our neighbourhood teams to work with local residents, acting on the information they provide to help make our communities safer.

“If anyone has any information about crime or anti-social behaviour in their area then I would urge them to report it to us so that it can be actioned by ourselves and our partner agencies.”

Information about how you can report online is available at: Report it | West Yorkshire Police. This includes a number of online reporting forms and our LiveChat system. There is also information about what types of incident should be reported to the police or the council at: How we can tackle anti-social behaviour | West Yorkshire Police

Photo Credit:

  • Images - West Yorkshire Police

Dave Cross avatar

Dave Cross

Journalist at POTV
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Dave is a freelance writer; with articles on music, motorbikes, football, pop-science, vaping and tobacco harm reduction in Sounds, Melody Maker, UBG, AWoL, Bike, When Saturday Comes, Vape News Magazine, and syndicated across the Johnston Press group. He was published in an anthology of “Greatest Football Writing”, but still believes this was a mistake. Dave contributes sketches to comedy shows and used to co-host a radio sketch show. He’s worked with numerous vape companies to develop content for their websites.

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