Slave labour and Spain’s secret cigarette production


APPROXIMATELY 10 per cent of cigarettes sold in Spain are illegal, and up to 90 per cent of them are produced by gangs based in the country according to reports from Customs agents. 

The Police have said that people working under slave conditions are being used by criminal gangs who seeing a demand for cheap cigarettes in crisis-hit Spain, organised  the importing of tobacco, paper, filters, machinery and labour to set up illegal factories and produce hundreds of thousands of packs of cigarettes each day.

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Authorities claim they have dismantled as many as eight ‘factories’ throughout Spain in the last two years, “Illegal factories that are able to produce hundreds of thousands of packs a day” the Police told El Pais, “They bring the machines in from Poland and Belarus, taking off the identification plates so they pass as agricultural equipment without being inspected.” 

“The quality of the packaging is very good, despite the fact that the people working the machines are working pretty much under slave conditions.” they added.


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