Customs and TradeNewsSmuggling

Joint Action Day Arktos 4 deals a serious blow to cross-border crime

The operation, which ended in May, was led by Frontex together with Estonia and Poland along Finland, Latvia, Lithuania, Slovakia and Sweden as well as EU agencies (Europol, Olaf, Eurojust), and Interpol. In the crosshairs of law enforcement and customs officers were migrant and excise goods smuggling as well as document fraud.

In just two weeks, the officers taking part in the operation managed to seize 15 million illegal cigarettes, 2 tons of tobacco, 20 stolen vehicles; detected 36 forged documents, 252 irregular border crossings and 445 overstayers. They also identified and investigated 236 migrant smugglers.

Joint Action Day Arktos 4 was coordinated under the umbrella of the European Multidisciplinary Platform against Criminal Threats (EMPACT), a four-year plan for the fight against serious and organised crime. It brings together law enforcement of EU Member States, European agencies and international organisations to jointly strengthen Europe’s borders and internal security. The results and intelligence gathered helps in ongoing and future investigations.