Written Answers. - Illegal Tobacco Sales.

Noel Ahern


512 Mr. N. Ahern asked the Minister for Justice the action, if any, she is taking to prevent the sale of illegally imported cigarettes and tobacco in the city and suburbs; the way in which 38 sellers were openly recently observed selling such products in the Henry Street/Mary Street area, Dublin 1; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [16814/96]

I am informed by the Garda authorities that this acitivity is being targeted by the Garda and Customs and Excise Service who, I should stress, have a central role as this is a Revenue offence. There have already been a number of prosecutions, and additional prosecutions are pending. The Garda/customs response is not confined to just the street dealers but includes house and warehouse searches to try to curtail the sources of supply.