A host of illegal tobacco has been seized from corner shops in Dundee as part of a Trading Standards clamp-down.
Dundee City Council officers swooped this week to recover 4000 cigarettes and more than half a kilogramme of hand-rolling tobacco.
The cheap products would not have had to adhere to strict safety standards such as having a self-extinguishing design, thus posing a fire risk.
Some of the cigarettes and tobacco, which would not have been subject to tax when sold, are counterfeit so the quality is completely unknown.
Some of those selling were also unregistered leading to concerns products may have been sold without regard to age restrictions, encouraging children and young people take up the habit.
Councillor Alan Ross, community safety and public protection convener, said cut-price illegal products are not worth the cost to communities and society.
He said: “This latest haul is another successful outcome in our fight against the availability of illegal tobacco.
“This illicit trade supply chain has been linked to organised crime and criminal gangs who support other criminal activity such as drug dealing, money laundering and people trafficking which is why it is vital that we stamp down heavily on it.
“These products have a low price tag, but the true cost to people and the community is high.
“We urge everyone to report any suspected sales of potentially dangerous cigarette and tobacco products so we can catch the criminals involved.”
The council’s Trading Standard officers work with Police Scotland to tackle the illegal tobacco trade in the city and operations have used sniffer dogs to track down the fake products.
Trading Standards manager Raymond Lynch, added that cheap tobacco harmed efforts to improve public health.
He said: “Smoking is key public health issue and we are campaigning to reduce it to protect people from devastating smoking-related illnesses.
“This is why it is so important cheap illegal tobacco which encourages people to start smoking and discourages current smokers from quitting is not available.
“Any information relating to the sale of illicit cigarettes locally should be reported to Trading Standards on 03454 04 05 06.”