Officers investigate alleged cigarette production in factory

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A TEAM of officers from various government agencies led by the police is investigating the operation of a factory allegedly producing cigarettes in Port Moresby.
Officers of the National Drug and Vice squad, National Narcotics Bureau and PNG Customs visited the factory on Friday to check on the legality of its operation.
“We have been monitoring the sale and distribution of the cigarettes for two month and we moved in today (Friday) after getting a search warrant,” Sergeant Thomas Moyang said.
He said they were disappointed with the management of the company “for not cooperating with us”.
“We were supposed to search this warehouse yesterday (Thursday). And we have to wait for them till now 5.30pm (Friday).”
No comment could be obtained from the company.
Moyang said they were investigating whether the company had a licence to import raw tobacco and repack them.
He also said they wanted to find out if there was any allegation of tax evasion.
The team will find out from the British American Tobacco, the legitimate tobacco retailing company in PNG, if the company is one of its distributing agents.
Moyang said all the agencies would conduct their own investigations.