THOUSANDS of cigarettes have been seized as part of the county council’s ongoing campaign to tackle illegal tobacco.

During Operation Henry, conducted by the council’s trading standards team and Dorset Police, a total of 2,640 cigarettes and sixteen pouches of tobacco were confiscated by officers.

Inspections were carried out at four premises across the county using sniffer dogs supplied by Wagtails UK.

Richard Herringshaw, principal trading standards officer, said: “Using sniffer dogs is a first for us and we are pleased with the results.

“The premises were visited based on intelligence received both directly from the public and from Dorset Police.

“I would like to thank all of those who took the time to report suspected premises. Illegal tobacco harms legitimate business and makes smoking more attractive as illegal tobacco will always be cheaper.”

Dorset County Council’s cabinet member for community services, Cllr Colin Jamieson, added: “Provision of illegal tobacco products can have a direct impact on vulnerable young people.

“I urge anyone who is aware of illegal tobacco being supplied in their community to report it to us.”