All tobacco, regardless of where is it bought, is harmful to health – one in two long-term smokers will die as a result of their addiction. Selling cheap illegal cigs might not seem like a big deal, but it’s bad news for our community for all sorts of reasons.
Smoking is the UK’s leading cause of early death, causing approx. 100,000 avoidable deaths every year. Children and young smokers are often targeted by illegal tobacco dealers, making it even easier for them to get hooked. Smokers will smoke more too, as it’s cheaper.
There is no evidence to suggest that illegal tobacco contains rat droppings/floor sweeepings/saw dust etc, or that it is more harmful to health than legal tobacco – the reality is that all tobacco and its smoke contains over 5,000 chemicals, 60 of which are known to cause cancer.
Young people are visiting illegal fag houses to buy cigarettes and getting involved with criminals closely linked with drugs and organised crime, putting them in potentially dangerous situations.
Illegal tobacco has strong connections with organised crime, so many of the people smuggling, distributing and selling it are involved in drug dealing, money laundering and terrorism.
Do you know where illegal tobacco is being sold? Report it anonymously here