- MPs are recommending two “drink free days”, minimum pricing and allowing licences to be removed on “health grounds”
- The BMA are urging the banning of smoking in cars and restrictions on smoking in the home
- Stella Creasy continues with her campaign to cap the APR that lenders can charge on loans
- Other ‘campaigners’ are calling for a ‘fat tax’ such as that introduced in Denmark
- And gambling is in their sights as another ‘lifestyle sin’
According to a new report by Italian anti-crime group SOS Impresa, as reported by Reuters, "Organised crime has tightened its grip on the Italian economy during the economic crisis, making the Mafia the country's biggest "bank" and squeezing the life out of thousands of small firms, according to a report on Tuesday."
The high tax-induced price of tobacco products in the UK has led to many smokers seeking alternative cheaper sources of cigarettes and handrolling tobacco (HRT), both legal (duty-free and crossborder shopping) and illegal (smuggling and bootlegging). The TMA estimates that in 2009 this non-UK duty paid consumption (NUKDP) accounted for 21% of the cigarettes and 58% of the HRT smoked in the UK.
Seizures of contraband alcohol smuggled from France have surged to around three times their normal levels this summer, say officials. French customs officers in the Channel ports of Calais and Boulogne-sur-Mer confiscated 82,000 litres of illegal spirits in the past month.
The use of loan sharks is increasing and going to "get worse", according to experts in the South West. The Bristol-based Illegal Money Lending Team claims it is already a serious problem across the region. Spokesman Alan Evans said they were "really concerned" and that with harder times ahead "this problem will get worse". Since its launch three years ago the team has recorded a 700% increase in referrals which are still growing.