Tobacco Smuggling Decreases by 2-3 times through Ukraine Routes

“We are quite active in fighting the organized cross-border crime organized by criminal groups, expose schemes and ways of smuggling cigarettes”, – said during the conference Volodymyr Nikiforenko, the First Deputy Head of the State Border Guard Service of Ukraine.

At the conference, Volodymyr Nikiforenko stated that having strengthened special legal regimes apart from international channels, they managed to expose organizers who used other ways to smuggle cigarettes across the border, including the movement of cigarettes by small aircraft. In September, a pilot was detained in Cherkasy region and a superlight aircraft of the type “Zenith” was confiscated without board number. With this aircraft only during one day offenders violated airspace of Romania four times to move tobacco products.

In addition, in Ivano-Frankivsk region an AN-2 plane was detained which carried illegal tobacco products to the territory of Romania. Also three citizens of Ukraine were detained, residents of Khmelnytskyi and Ivano-Frankivsk regions who were on board of the aircraft. Border guards repeatedly revealed the use of drones and found other means of smuggling tobacco.

“In general, during this year, our colleagues within the country, international organizations and law enforcement agencies of neighboring countries note that tobacco smuggling to EU countries has been decreased by 2-3 times”, told Volodymyr Nikiforenko during a conference on combating illegal trade of tobacco products.