ITALY: Customs officers have seized nearly 4 tonnes of illegal refrigerant, including the banned HCFC R22, at the port of Livorno.
The shipment is said to have comprised 300 illegal non-refillable cylinders of Chinese origin, totalling 3.7 tonnes. Images released by the Customs and Monopoly Agency indicate that the illegal refrigerants included the HFCs R32, R404A, R410A and the long-banned HCFC ozone depleting gas R22.
Documents also revealed that the importing company, a car parts and accessories business based in Lazio, were not in possession of the necessary F-gas import quotas.
The entire cargo, estimated to be worth about €30,000, was seized and the importer has been reported to the authorities for violations of the European F-gas regulation and breaches of regulations banning substances that deplete the ozone layer.
The operation was carried out with the collaboration of the local anti-fraud department and OLAF, the EU Anti-Fraud Office.