Four people were indicted and imprisoned on Sunday as part of the dismantling of a network of traffickers.
They are suspected of having imported 75 tonnes of contraband cigarettes.
The investigation, which began at the end of 2020 under the supervision of the Jirs (Specialized Interregional Jurisdiction) of Bordeaux (Gironde), relates to "large-scale cigarette trafficking orchestrated by a team of criminals acting over a large western part of the national territory" , according to the Pays de la Loire gendarmerie.
“Particularly mobile” people
The investigations, in particular carried out by the investigators of the research section of the gendarmerie of Nantes (Loire-Atlantique), made it possible to determine that they were “individuals from Eastern Europe”, “particularly mobile "And using" boxes that they rent in several large cities of the national territory (Nantes, Bordeaux, Montpellier, Béziers) in order to supply local wholesalers ".
"Seven individuals involved in this criminal structure" were arrested Friday morning in Nantes, Rodez (Aveyron) and Montpellier (Hérault).
Four were indicted and remanded in custody.
“The searches carried out in various boxes made it possible to seize nearly 5 tons of counterfeit cigarettes.
A sum of 37,300 euros in cash is seized as well as two vehicles ”, specify the gendarmes.
In addition, "the investigation and the evidence gathered establish that trafficking permitted the smuggling of 75 tonnes of cigarettes."