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Illegal $40m tobacco-growing operation found west of Brisbane

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Queensland Police and the Australian Tax Office have uncovered 10 acres of illegal tobacco – an estimated 25 tonnes – with a value of almost $40 million.

The discovery was made in Linthorpe, about 135 kilometres west of Brisbane and located within the Toowoomba region, when police and ATO officers searched a property this week.

The illegal tobacco crop in Linthorpe, near Toowoomba.

According to the ATO, it is illegal to grow tobacco in Australia without a licence, and there have been no licensed tobacco growers or manufacturers in Australia since 2006.

Growing tobacco carries a maximum penalty of up to 10 years in prison, and the ATO estimates illicit tobacco costs the community $822 million annually in lost revenue.

According to the…



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