A joint agency taskforce consisting of authorities from both sides of the Northern Irish border has seized 4,400L of "illicit fuel", a fuel tank and equipment from an unlicensed filling station in recent days.

The taskforce - which focused on rural crime - consisted of members of both the Police Service of Northern Ireland and An Garda Síochána.

In a statement on the matter on Friday (July 30), PSNI officers with the Fermanagh-Omagh division said:

"Over the course of today [Friday], officers from Neighbourhood and Local Policing Teams and Tactical Support Groups across Fermanagh, Omagh, South Armagh, Derry City and Strabane have been working alongside our An Garda Síochána colleagues and partner agencies as part of our Joint Agency Task Force operation focusing on rural crime.

Image source: PSNI

"Along with colleagues from HMRC we attended a premises in Newry that was operating as an unlicensed filling station.

Approximately 4,400L of suspected illicit fuel, two sets of commercial forecourt pumps and a 12,000L fuel tank were seized.

"We carried out 84 authorised vehicle check points, and a number of roadside breath tests which we were pleased came back negative and seized one vehicle on suspicion of a number of offences.

"We searched nine vehicles and six people on suspicion of drugs offences, recovering and disposing of small amounts of drugs.

In the Newry area, we were also able to locate and arrest a male who was wanted on bench warrant."

Apologising for causing any "temporary delays", the PSNI statement concluded by stating:

"These operations will continue in the weeks and months ahead as we work together to prevent cross-border crime and disrupt the movements and activities of organised crime gangs."