Two held in connection with illegal fuel plant

Two people have been arrested after thousands of litres of dangerous illegal fuel were seized today in west Belfast.

Cash, a vehicle and more than 5,400 litres of diesel were confiscated by Revenue and Customs today at a taxi company.

Officers discovered an unregulated petrol station which can be as dangerous as a bomb within an industrial estate at Agnes Street.

Assistant director of criminal investigation John Whiting said: “This operation involved laundered green diesel being transported and sold on to commercial users throughout Northern Ireland.

“These illegal sites and those involved are ripping off honest retailers, creating a cheap and unregulated supply, that they cannot compete with, and as taxpayers we are all being deprived of funds that could be used for essential services in our communities.”

The man and woman were arrested in connection with the operation to tackle suspected province-wide fuel fraud.

Unregulated filling stations have no health and safety standards and in the worst scenario could explode.

Security minister and chair of the Organised Crime Task Force Paul Goggins said: “Law enforcement agencies will tackle fuel fraud wherever it occurs and today’s very successful operation in Belfast goes to demonstrate that there will be no hiding place.

“The safety of the public was totally disregarded by criminals out to make a quick profit at the expense of everyone in our community.”


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