HMRC are getting their retaliation in for the shite PR that they've been getting in the past few days (HMRC Chairman had to apologise for their appalling levels of "customer service") BBC News - Customs raids target shops selling counterfeit alcohol (c) Auntie They were having "pilot projects". When I did that for a living, such raids happened on at least a weekly basis, with the same sort of results (large volumes of Duty Suspended beer going for animal feed, non-counterfeit spirits being disposed of to the benefit of the treasury, and smuggled/counterfeit fags being burned in incinerators (not in single controlled fires)). The local cops and trading standards people would be involved too. And very occasionally the left hand of the Dept would talk to the right and a VAT visit might happen at the same time, and the light side might talk to the dark and a direct tax visit happen. Sometimes it's good to see the wheel being reinvented.