A big success was celebrated by the European Anti-Fraud Office in the course of the so-called »Operation Diabolo«: besides 135 million counterfeit brand name cigarettes it was also possible to confiscate 557.000 other counterfeits such as clothes, footwear, toys, furniture, suitcases and wristwatches. The operation was a cross-border action carried out by customs authorities from all 27 EU member states in co-operation with Interpol, Europol and the World Customs Organization.
Thanks to this action it was possible to avoid customs and tax deficits in the EU which would have amounted to approximately 220 million Euros in the field of cigarettes alone. In total 67 containers filled with illegal goods were discovered. The „Operation Diabolo» had been initiated by the ASEM (Asia-Europe Meeting) member states. More than 300 European customs officers took part in it.