Bulgaria -two cigarette smuggling attempts busted on Serbian border..

Click to enlarge; photo by Bulgaria Customs Agency..
January 8, 2010 - Two attempts to smuggle cigarettes across the Serbia-Bulgaria border were discovered by customs officers at the Kalotina border checkpoint on Thursday, January 7th. Map: Bulgaria - Serbia..

The busts come after Bulgaria introduced new increased duties on January 1, 2010 on the price of a pack of cigarettes of anywhere between BGN 1,10 (0.81 USD) and 1,40 (1.03 USD) making the price of the best-selling “Victory” brand BGN 5 (3.69 USD) instead of the current BGN 3,40 (2.51 USD).

A Bulgarian citizen was arrested after it was discovered that he had hidden 150 packets in his spare tyre [tire]. Customs officials became suspicious after an x-ray found strange shadows inside the tyre [tire] of the Mercedes. Several hours earlier, again at Kalotina, a Serbian citizen was detained after 410 packets of cigarettes were hidden in the spare wheel and two rear tyres [tires] of his car.

Contraband cigarettes account for 15-20 percent of the market in Bulgaria (May 2008) - contraband usually increases in cases of price hikes.

Reference: Bulgaria Police Bust Cigarette Smugglers on Serbia Border, Novinite.com (Sofia News Agency) , 1/8/2010.

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