HMRC & Trading Standards crackdown on illegal alcohol

Posted on: Tuesday 8 June 2021

More than 4000 cans of lager including Stella Artois, Orangeboom and Kronenbourg have been seized by trading standards and customs officers.

A joint operation between Torfaen Council and HMRC targeted three shops suspected of selling duty avoided alcohol.

A total of over 2000 litres of beer was removed, and HMRC are currently continuing to investigate the businesses in question.

Councillor Mandy Owen, Executive Member for the Environment, said: “This is not a victimless crime as selling duty avoided alcohol provides greater profit to these retailers and gives them an unfair advantage over their competitors. Avoiding duty also has the effect of reducing much needed funding for essential services, including the NHS.

“This is another great example of the Council working closely with partner organisations  to tackle crime in our community.”

Guidance from the Association of Convenience Stores states: “Alcohol duty fraud is a serious issue for the convenience sector. Irresponsible sellers of alcohol that avoid paying UK duty have a significant competitive advantage as they can sell alcohol cheaper or can operate with higher margins. We all have our part to play in preventing the pervasive and damaging trade.”

If you have any information about counterfeit alcohol/duty fraud please contact the HMRC hotline on 0800 595 000. Duty fraud is a crime, and you can report it confidentially to Crimestoppers on 0800 555111 or the Torfaen Trading Standards Team by emailing

Find out more about what Trading Standards get up to in Torfaen by visiting
Last Modified: 09/06/2021 Back to top