An extra weapon in the battle against alcohol duty fraud has been handed to retailers with a how-to guide created by the ACS.

The Treasury is currently losing £1.2bn a year to unscrupulous dealers supplying illicit booze through duty fraud and soon the onus will be on retailers to check their wholesaler is registered as an alcohol supplier.

ACS chief executive James Lowman told Retail Express: “We published this guide because our members just got the point where they felt enough was enough – we had to act together to stop duty fraud.

“That means retailers who are involved in duty fraud having no excuses, but also legitimate retailers feeling empowered to report duty fraud at a local level.”

He also challenged HMRC to play its part by stamping out duty fraud throughout the supply chain, and for licensing departments to strip licences from those found to be engaged in duty fraud.

Shortly before Christmas 100 Scottish retailers were facing losing their licence after being caught selling illicit booze.