Search

Two Havering men jailed for tobacco smuggling

16:42 02 October 2012

Turner

Turner

Archant

Two men from Havering are among four jailed for smuggling millions of cigarettes into the UK hidden in furniture to evade £1.5 million in taxes.

Nigel Sheekey, 50, of Mawney Road, Romford, was sentenced to four years at Ipswich Crown Court on Monday, after being convicted of four illegal importations.

Terry Turner, 51, of South End Road, Rainham, will serve 22 months after being convicted of his involvement in two importations.

Michael Lowe, 61, of Carlina Gardens, Woodford Green, pleaded guilty to seven importations, and was sentenced to four years and nine months in prison.

And Paul Huzzey, 56, of Tycehurst Hill, Loughton, pleaded guilty in 2011 to two importations and was jailed for 18 months.

The four were caught after customs officers used covert surveillance to watch a delivery of smuggled cigarettes and tobacco to a warehouse in Walthamstow, east London.

Lowe was central to the illegal operation using contacts made in Indonesia.

He set up a series of importations declared as furniture or handicrafts, with knowledge gained from working in the trade, in which he concealed illicit tobacco and cigarettes.

Investigators uncovered a total of 22 importations between July 2007 and April 2009.

Lowe was a frequent visitor to Indonesia using family names and addresses in the UK to set up the importations.

Paperwork found at his home resulted in the seizure of nearly 1.7 tons of handrolling tobacco and nearly 700,000 cigarettes in a container in Indonesia.

Sheekey adopted a false name and used his mother’s home address to facilitate the importation and collection of one of the consignments.

Turner was involved in organising a load and the delivery of another.

Huzzey supplied storage facilities to the organisation.

Paul Barton, Customs’ director of criminal investigation, said: “The effect of this type of criminal activity on legitimate retailers can be devastating. Millions of pounds, which should be available for public services, are lost each year.”

A fifth man, Anthony Wheeler, 49, of March, Cambridgeshire, pleaded guilty in September 2011 and will be sentenced in November.

Anyone with information should call the customs hotline on: 0800 59 5000 or email: customs.hotline@hmrc.gsi.gov.uk.

All five men were convicted of the fraudulent evasion of excise duty.

Latest Romford News Stories

15:00
GBP Estates Limited and Time 107.5 FM have launched a Christmas appeal to give a presents to Havering children, who might not otherwise be lucky enough to receive one.

A letting agency and local radio team have teamed up to put a smile on the faces of children, who won’t be surrounded by family and presents this Christmas.

BBC One show presenter Angelica Bell with pupils from The Albany School.

A BBC One presenter and a team from a bank visited pupils to deliver a workshop aimed at promoting better financial awareness.

40-years-ago

A look back at the biggest local stories from this week 20, 40 and 60 years ago.

Yesterday, 10:00
HaveringMind volunteers about to set out to deliver posters and leaflets to local GP surgeries

As a report shows that one in three GP appointments are related to mental health, Chloe Farand finds out about how doctors can help refer patients to adequate services

Fri, 16:28
The Houses of Parliament, where long-standing Romford MP John Parker often raised issues affecting his constituents (and, unfortunately for him, was routinely ignored). Picture: Tim Ireland/PA

John Parker was a Labour MP for 48 years. Public school and Oxford educated, Parker was not a typical Labour man. But he spoke up for his constituents, raising local issues in House of Commons questions.

Fri, 14:02
Former dinner lady Carol Strange with kitchen staff at Havering Sixth Form College.

Fond farewells and a few tears were shed as a former dinner lady retired after working almost 40 years at a college.

Fri, 12:35
Rotational nurse Sally Barbrook, Nelft's rotational nurse lead Paul Chesnaye and rotational nurse Kate Channells at Goodmayes Hospital, Barley Lane, Goodmayes.

Nurses caring for people with mental health problems can now be trained in both mental and physical health simultaneously in a groundbreaking new scheme.

Fri, 11:57
Collier Row's 2015 Christmas event. Picture: Andrew Berwick

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas, as Collier Row’s annual festivities return to dazzle residents.

Newsletter Sign Up

Most read news

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

News from your area

WW100

Click on the banner above for full coverage of the centenary commemorations of the outbreak of the First World War.

Competitions

£3,000 goes a long way at Boots

Cosmetics, toiletries, vitamins and more. Boots is the number one choice when it comes to purchasing daily essentials.

Kit yourself out and go Apple mad!

If you’re obsessed with Apple or just love a good gadget, this is a prize that will blow you away! An incredible £3,333 to spend on Apple goodies! How would you like to be the proud new owner of the Apple Watch?

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Romford Recorder
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now