Iran Arrests Members of Big Cigarette Smuggling Ring

TEHRAN (Tasnim) – The Iranian Intelligence Ministry forces disbanded a network that smuggled large amounts of contraband tobacco products into the country.

The ministry said in a statement on Wednesday that members of the network had been operating in an organized way in 10 Iranian provinces as part of 15 connected smuggling bands.

The statement said members of the network had earned millions of dollars from the illegal transfer of cigarettes and tobacco into Iran, adding that the proceedings were funneled to bank accounts outside Iran by making use of illegal currency exchange shops.

It said some 60 people had been arrested as part of the operation which led to the discovery and closure of more than 100 warehouses used to store the smuggled tobacco products.

The Iranian Intelligence Ministry said the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) and judicial authorities in Iran had contributed to the operation to bust the smuggling network, Press TV reported.

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