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Multi-million dollar vape bust in Adelaide

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An Australian vape seizure has stopped $4.5 million from lining the pockets of criminals, the Federal Government has said.
Australian vape seizure

The Australian Border Force (ABF) has made its first large-scale seizure of disposable vapes since an import ban was introduced on 1 January.

Border officials found 150,000 vapes inside several suspicious packages in Adelaide last week.

Vapes seized include the popular IGET Bars, which are marketed in several different flavours and bright packaging. The intercepted vaping products are estimated to be worth $4.5 million. Police are yet to lay any charges.

Australian vape seizure

ABF officers discovered 10 tonnes of disposable vapes inside 14 packages sent from China, labelled “refillable atomisers”.

Further inquiries led ABF investigators to another three tonnes of vapes. About 250,000 disposable vapes have been seized across Australia this month, worth an estimated $7.4 million.

The Federal Government believes the seizures will directly impact criminal networks, restricting funds to support other illegal activity.

New vaping rules

An import ban on disposable vapes is the first of several anti-vaping measures due to come into effect this year.

In March, reusable recreational vapes will also be banned from entering Australia. Vape importers will need formal approval from the Australian Drug Control Office to import products. Flavoured vapes and bright packaging will not be permitted.

The government will also introduce legislation this year to criminalise the sale and supply of recreational vapes, on top of the existing law criminalising non-prescription nicotine vapes.

The new regulations have also restricted Australians from bringing more than two disposable vapes with them from overseas.

ABF Assistant Commissioner Chris Waters advised returning Australians to surrender vapes at airport collection bins.

Waters said the ABF doesn’t think the intercepted shipment of vapes was solely intended for South Australia. Those involved in the importation could face penalties ranging from fines to imprisonment.

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