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A Hythe man who left seven suitcases full of smuggled tobacco and cigarettes in the passenger café waiting area of Harwich Port has been sentenced.
44-year-old David Carr from Ocknell Grove in Hythe near Southampton admitted to HM Revenue & Customs investigators that he had been very foolish.
He left the cases, with his name on, in the café while he gave a friend a lift in his car.
Officers found 78 kilos of tobacco and 2,800 cigarettes in the cases and a further 10,000 cigarettes in the boot of his car.
The revenue evaded was estimated as £15,800.
Carr was given 200 hours community service at Chelmsford Crown Court and ordered to pay back £15,800 within 28 days or face a default sentence of nine months in jail.
The cigarettes and tobacco have been destroyed.
Carr was arrested on the 7 August 2012 at Harwich.