counterfeit cigarette salesVideo footage from BBC South East caught shoppers openly selling cigarettes in their East Sussex store to undercover reporters. The Police subsequently seized tobacco products worth £30,000 from four shops and a home. One man was arrested and was bailed until 5 December.

Amber Rudd, Tory MP for Hastings and Rye said in the programme: “The idea of [smuggled cigarettes] being sold over the counter in newsagents is really quite shocking. Anything that eats away at the £11bn that’s legitamately raised from tobacco sales is hurting the economy of the country.”

Kent shopkeeper and Tobacco Retailers Alliance spokesperson Debbie Corris said on the show: “We’re losing legitimate sales and we lose footfall coming through the door. It affects all retailers in a big way.”