New CCTV Photos Released After £2m Cigaratte Theft
Cigarettes with a street value of £2million were stolen in Southampton Docks sometime between 12.30am and 3am on Monday, May 24 this year.
Officers believe there were at least four people involved in the robbery and are now keen to trace the man pictured.
The offenders forced entry to the premises on the dockyard site and tied the security staff up while they loaded 26 pallets of cigarettes onto an articulated lorry.
The haul of cigarettes stolen included Benson and Hedges, Lambert and Butler, Superkings and Mayfair.
A number of packets of Golden Virginia tobacco were also taken.
The cigarettes may be recognisable because many of the individual packets will have health warnings printed in Spanish and French.
Detective Inspector Simon Baker, from Hampshire Constabulary’s Serious and Organised Crime Unit, said:
“This was a very serious crime carried out by what we suspect is a highly organised gang of criminals.
“The victims of this crime were very shaken by this incident and I would appeal to the public to call me if they recognise the male in the photo. It is possible that those involved in the haulage business may recognise him. The man may have links with Kent/Essex/London areas.”
Police are appealing for anyone who recognises the man in the CCTV pictures to get in touch.
Officers are also appealing for anyone who has been offered cigarettes matching this description to contact them.
A 46-year-old man from Essex was arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to commit aggravated burglary and released on police bail until October 12.
Anyone with any information should contact Det Insp Baker, at Hulse Road in Southampton, quoting Operation Gallop, on 101 or call the charity Crimestoppers line anonymously on 0800 555 111.
Callers from outside Hampshire should contact 0845 045 45 45.