Illegal tobacco with a street value of over £21,500 has been seized from three premises in Knowsley.
Knowsley Council’s Trading Standards team carried out the operation with colleagues from Merseyside Police and the Trading Standards North West Regional Tobacco Team.
Based on information from the public, officers discovered almost 135,000 illicit cigarettes and over 8 kilograms of hand rolled tobacco at two residential properties and one business premises in the Huyton and Stockbridge Village area.
All of the products are now being tested and will be destroyed.
A spokesperson for Knowsley Council said: “We take the problem of illegal tobacco extremely seriously and it is certainly not a victimless crime as some people wrongly believe.
“Cheap illegal tobacco is particularly harmful as it helps children to start smoking.
“This seizure came as a result of a tip-off from a member of the public and I would encourage anyone who has information about the supply of illicit tobacco to report it.”
Anyone with information about illegal tobacco should contact Knowsley Council’s Trading Standards team on 0151 443 4712.
They can also telephone Crime-stoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or the Trading Standards North West Illicit Tobacco Team on 01925 442 466.