A black market fuel-laundering plant costing €2m a year in lost taxes has been uncovered.
Customs officers disrupted the illegal double processing unit, one concealed in a shed and the other in a 40ft container, on commercial premises in Rathmore, Dundalk, Co Louth.
The operation had the capacity to process four million litres of fuel a year.
Customs seized four lorries, 18,000 litres of marked mineral oil, a tanker containing 6,000 litres of laundered fuel, the lorry trailer with a concealed tank and bleaching earth.
Elsewhere, an oil tanker containing 19,000 litres of smuggled fuel was seized by Revenue’s Customs Service while travelling south on the M1.
In a separate operation, a man in his 20s was arrested after 248,000 cigarettes, 51 kilos of tobacco and a small quantity of herbal cannabis was seized in a raid on a small lock-up in north inner city Dublin.
The cigarettes were worth €116,000 and would have cost the Exchequer €98,000 while the rolling tobacco was estimated at €22,000.