What can be done about counterfeit tobacco in Cyprus?

by Janet Gigg

We purchased some Golden Virginia tobacco in Paphos on Sept 7th 2010 for a relative and when he tried to use it found it was totally un-smokable - total rubbish

Just wondered if anyone else had been stung and if they have any advice on what to do.

Comments for What can be done about counterfeit tobacco in Cyprus?

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Nov 13, 2014
fake cutters choice
by: phil netley

I bought 40 packs of cutters choice from a shop in pathos called theos i tried some and instantlly realised Wasnt genuine. when i qusetioned the owner he told me that he only sold the product. I will not be buying anymore from him and when i next visit there will be a confrontation about it.

Sep 21, 2014
I agree
by: Anonymous

I agree with the Annonymous comment on May 1st 14. I have just come back from Cyprus (8th time) I will only go to Theo's as they are the best and will not fleece you or wrong do you. Every time I go there they always say hello and ask how I am doing.

Cypriots are very good at making the English feel welcome and the family that run Theo's are one of them. Anything wrong and they will be happy to help so go and confront them. I am not an old fart with a very stubborn view because they are cheapest I am 22 and have become to know them.

Jul 30, 2014
Fake tobacco in eastern european Paphos shops
by: Anonymous

You should have gone to a proper store like Papantoniou or Theo's cave opposite Debenhams. There are loads of Eastern Europeans operating fake goods in Cyprus and the consumer should not go anywhere near these shops. I have just been to Papohos again and its amazing to see how many people buy the shite because its 20 cents a packet cheaper than the genuine stuff

Jul 23, 2014
fake tabacco
by: chris findon

l cant believe this is still happening l wrote a message on this page a couple of years ago you should write to the tabacco company in England
another scam they are doing is taking to pouches out of a box then folding one pouch in two making it look like the box has 5 pouches when really it on has three we found this out when we were packing to go to the airport l got the pouches back l had to shout

Jul 22, 2014
Fake golden Virginia paphos
by: Anonymous

Like the previous comments by Len, i too visited Paphos and purchased Golden Virginia from the same shop (top of the tops) in June of this year.when I opened it on my return, it was total rubbish, god knows what was in it. It was like straw and smelt like Camel shit, sent it away to Golden Virgina at Nottingham,to be tested they confirmed that it was not one of their products. Been to Cyprus many times , but never again they can rot in their own stew. There is an old saying, be aware of Greeks bearing gifts.how true.

Jun 05, 2014
Fake golden Virginia
by: Len

Just returned from Paphos,bought 1kilo of Golden Viginia for 226 euros.when I opened them on arrival home, dreadful stuff just like wood shavings,no wonder Cyprus is going down the pan, been there about 15 times,but this will be the last time, the address on my receipt is .Top of the tops trading ltd Posidonos Avenue ,Myrra Complex, shop 30-31.

May 01, 2014
by: Anonymous

Ok all I have to say is that firstly the person going by the name of Moose must be a real Moose and seriously has nothing better to do with his life, and second whoever has anything bad to say about Theo's Cava opposite Debenhams and has proof then why not confront them, and all you do is sit on the computer and badmouth people and businesses without any reason. I am saying all of this with confidence cause I know for sure that you will never get anything fake from Theo's. AND THAT'S A FACT !!!

Aug 08, 2013
Beware cigs in paphos
by: stephen

1st off I have to say I have been to Cyprus many times ayia napa there is a tobacconist at the corner of the main street had no problems.

Also went to theo,s in paphos had no problems any shop buying single packets no problems but I got stung in paphos don't remember name of shop but if you come out of car park and walk up toward left ie. go past theo,s there is a nice open air restaurant on second floor. Walk by it keep going some ways up you will come to an in shot on left there are lots of tables in the middle and there are shops right round them it was the shop right up in the left hand corner they have there cigs sitting in 1600,s with lighters taped to them and are way cheaper than theo,s?

I bought 3200 of them when I got home and opened them it was like smoking hay so be careful with all I have read on here I,m afraid to even go to theo,s this year but I will try him and let you know how I fare out.

Jun 06, 2013
Theo's Gift Cellar is legitimate
by: Anonymous

I just want to share my opinion and experience in response to the negative comments about Theo's.
My boyfriend and I have just returned from Paphos and one of our main highlights was visiting Theo's each day for our supplies and meeting both Theo and his son Mario who I can only describe as two of the nicest most welcoming and genuine people I have ever met. They were not only friendly and honest but very accomadating and their shop was the only shop that sold barrs irn-bru which for me (being Scottish) was great!! We also purchased several cigarrettes, cigars, tobacco and alcohol and I can assure you all that they sell genuine products at terrific prices with the best service I have ever experienced.
We plan on returning soon and we will be doing all our shopping in Theo's.

Mar 30, 2013
dodgy baccy
by: Anonymous

Been going to Cyprus for 18 years now and never had dodgy baccy. usually stay in paralimni area
And regularly buy GV baccy often from the dark side TRNC and always get the real thing only fake baccy i ever had came from Egypt and smelled of turpentine it was rank and even the packaging was coloured wrongly

Mar 23, 2013
by: Anonymous

I bought 1 kg Golden Virginia from Theos Gift Cellar Paphos and had my current account emptied via my card. 19th march 2013. Tobacco fine but at what cost

Jan 13, 2013
Counterfeit Tobacco
by: Anonymous

Take it back to where you bought it and get your money back!

Nov 01, 2012
by: JOHN


Aug 21, 2012
Fake Tobacco
by: Moose

Do yourselves a favour when buying cigarettes ot tobacco stay well away from THEOS!! Four years ago he sold me 16 sleeves of fake superking blacks and 1 kilo of Golden Virginia. I took them back on my way back to the airport, listened to all the excuses about being a bad batch, then helped myself to 16 sleeves straight from the shelf along with indivual pouches of GV and walked out of the shop.

Here is the man with a large sign in the window saying "beware of fake tobacco".

Since then I now make all my purchases from the tobacconist on the corner of the indoor market just along from the Kava Cafe. The Scots owner and her staff are most accommodating, Our holiday party in July 2012 purchased 48 sleeves and 2 kilo of GV with absolutely no problem at all.

Give the legitimate tobacconist your custom and money in the hope that these rip off merchants go out of business and help rid cyprus of the fake crap they want the too stupid tourists to buy.

Aug 15, 2012
Golden Virginia
by: Andrea

I bought 4 packs of 5 x 50g pouches of Golden Virginia in the Duty Free shop in Paphos airport (22/07/12) and I'm having to send 8 packs to British American Tobacco as Imperial Tobacco are not responsible for anything purchased via duty Free as they do not hold the copywright for that brand. They are sending it for testing to see if it's genuine as they informed me that even fake goods can get through and be offered for sale in Duty Free shops!! Seems the consumer is not safe from being ripped off even when every care is taken to try to avoid counterfeit goods.

Jun 04, 2012
fake tobacco
by: Anonymous

Just returned from Cyprus & wanted to let you all know the best places to get tabbacco & fags either at the airport or the supermarket opposite Debenhams (Papantoniou). I went into theos to enquire the price of baccy & straight away he was on the defensive showing me a receipt from the cash & carry which rang alarm bells straight away. In the supermarket baccy is 29.23euros for 5x50 grams at the airport it is 32.50 euros.

May 10, 2012
fake tobbacco in Cyprus
by: Anonymous

We got 2x60 pouches in sept 2010 & one lot of the 60 were fake. One lot was got from a shop in the left hand corner of the shopping area opposite Paphos harbour the other was from an asian owned shop behind that one on the main rd before you get to debenhams on the other side of the road. It seems rife out there now. I'm going back in a couple of weeks & will warn people.

Apr 29, 2012
Theo's is the best place to buy your tobacco
by: chris findon

As i have alway's warned people traveling to Paphos for there holidays. All ways buy from Theo's cava opposite Debenhams in the tourist area, you might pay 0.20 cents more BUT you know what you are getting, and that is the original product!!!!!

i alway's read about the people who buy fake tobacco and how they alway's loose there money, one way to avoid this is to open a couple of pouches on the island before you leave so as if anything is wrong with it (fake) you can take it back to the shop where you bought it and get your money back, before it's to late!!!!! now that's good advice.

Apr 10, 2012
Fake Tobacco - Top of the Tops Trading Ltd - Paphos
by: Vandra J

I purchased 1 kg of Golden Virginia Tobacco as a present for my brother on 31st March 2012 using my debit card.

When I got home I gave him his present and he telephoned me today 10th April 2012 and told me it was fake. I have been in touch with the bank and I have to call them back on 17th April to see if they can assist me.

Apr 10, 2012
Fake Tobacco - Top of the Tops Trading Ltd - Paphos
by: Vandra J

I purchased 1 kg of Golden Virginia Tobacco as a present for my brother on 31st March 2012 using my debit card.

When I got home I gave him his present and he telephoned me today 10th April 2012 and told me it was fake. I have been in touch with the bank and I have to call them back on 17th April to see if they can assist me.

Feb 06, 2012
Fake Tobacco
by: Suzie

In reply to the recent comment - I would only buy from large supermarkets or airport, the shop mentioned in several comments is FAKE, stay away from fags and tobacco advertising cheap!
Single packets are ok, they just rip off people buying 1.5kg packages, as most people don't open this until they get home.
If in doubt make sure you open the pack and smell it, you can tell straight away if its fake as smells like a dirty hamster cage!

ps, I brought FAKE tobacco Nov 2010 from Paphos,I was one of the lucky ones as I demanded my money back and got it in full.

Jan 31, 2012
Is old holbourn ligitimate in Paphos
by: Anonymous

Hi just reading the comments and it seems to be golden virginia which people are experiencing as fake as this is the most popular brand being a old holbourn smoker wondering has anyone encountered or know if this is legitimate or fake as going to paphos soon and want to get some REAL tobacco. Ta

Nov 15, 2011
Theos in Cyprus and fake tobacco
by: chris findon

I have been buying tabacco from theos next to debenhams and I can honestly say l have never had any fake tobacco from him. A few shops are selling fake tabacco and trying to put him out of business by telling lies about him. I trust him and always will.

Nov 08, 2011
Counterfeit Tobacco
by: Anonymous

I had no idea this was such a well known racket and I too bought from Top of the Tops Trading Ltd, Posidonos Ave, Myrra Complex, Kato Paphos, Cyprus - one entrance at the rear of the big Papintoniou Supermarket. Looks legit, large modern shop, vat registered receipt - I cannot believe the Cypriot authorities are not doing anything to put a stop to this.

I will go back to the shop next year and scream and shout and draw attention to the b******* but something needs to be done to prevent others being stung!


Oct 15, 2011
counterfeit baccy
by: bill smith

the same thing happened to me in northern cyprus bought 4 boxes got home opened them and the smell of the plastic pouches was enough to set the alarm bells ringing rolled a tin full for the wife she tried to smoke one what a joke

Aug 20, 2011
the best place for tabacco and cigs IS Theo's
by: John Smith

hello i would really like to say that the tabacco that you buy from theos IS and HAS always been the original product and anyone who says other wise is an idiot or does not know what they are smoking

Aug 15, 2011
theo,s gift cellar fake tobacco

I bought 3 kilo in november golden virginia from theos opp deberhams found out when back home it was dry and unsmokeable.went to pick houses original british cigarettes,and will always go there in future

Aug 15, 2011
by: John Smith

ha ha ha ha, i laugh in the face of this person who alegidly bought FAKE tabacco from THEO'S i am and have been a loyal customer of this shop for the past 9 years, run by a very pleasent father and son team, they are easily the most honest people i have ever met,and the only shop warning people about the fake tabacco in cyprus, all us locals here know which shops are doing this. the first shop is the one next to CYDIVE in a small shopping center to the right of THEO'S called COST-PRICE and lets face it who works for nothing!!! and the second one is to the left of THEO'S a shop called CANTINA PER VINI..And just so the people reading this know, THEO'S was the first official tabacconist shop that opend up in Cyprus in the year 1992 so i really dont think that they have to sell fake cigarettes and tabacco, and i would like to say to everyone TO GO TO THEO'S first and make sure for them selfs, and go to THEO'S for peice of mind. Thank you.

Aug 07, 2011
theo,s gift cellar fake tobacco&cigarettes in Paphos
by: Anonymous

Last week I visited paphos for my holidays. I buy 3kg tobacco from THEO,S GIFT CELLAR opp Debenhams it's all fake .I lost my money ,dont by anything from this shop it's all FAKE,SAVE YOUR MONEY.

Aug 07, 2011
fake golden virginia
by: Anonymous

I sent the fake tobacco to v foster she sent me what I paid for it in tabacco well pleased I am still going to the shop in paphos they can not get away with this

Aug 07, 2011
theo,s gift cellar fake tobacco
by: Anonymous


Jul 25, 2011
Fake Tabacco
by: Anonymous

I am pleased to say I have been in touch with imperial tabacco and if I send them the fake pouches they will give me what I paid for it in Cyprus,
Thank you to the person below who told us all to phone well done!

Jul 24, 2011
Fake Tabacco
by: Anonymous

We also bought some fake golden virigina from the shop by Mc Donalds last November, we got 3 kilo of rubbish, l am going back in November and will stand outside the shop and tell everyone l am also going to demand my money back, and tell him l am going to the papers and putting it in the Grapevine a free monthly paper it is really bad when people pay good money for rubbish, he let us take the tabacco of the shelf went to put it in bags and daughter said the changed them for some under the counter l never thought any more of it until we got home the only way to tell is on the front you will see about 6 red bar codes on the top of the pack
Chris Newquay

Jul 23, 2011
12.000.000 cigarettes seized
by: Anonymous

Counterfeit tobacco and cigarettes is a very profitable business for organised crime.

Follow this link to read about 12 million fake cigarettes seized in Gateshead, North East England.

Jul 22, 2011
top of tops paphos
by: marl

bought some on july last day of holiday didnt check it i got home ,rang veronica foster of imperial tobacco on 01159 587587 ask for complaints dept,she knows all about this shop im in process and sending a sample and they ll replace what you spent but only at a pouch at uk price,also in touch with my credit card company.steve can you tell me which credit card company you are with .and what you asked of them.cheers.

Jul 02, 2011
Fake Cigarettes and other counterfeit goods
by: christopher

A June 2009 piece by Gary Jones appearing in Time brings home the reality of the enormity of the problem with a view of the Bangkok Museum of Counterfeit goods.

Clemence Gautier, a Bangkok attorney with Tilleke & Gibbins explains:"People think, 'Oh, it's just a T shirt and it's no real harm,' but we try to explain where the money is going.

What if a 10-year-old girl is working every day to make those T shirts?

Jun 22, 2011
counterfeit tobacco
by: lesleynoel35@ntlworl.com

On a recent tv program, they revealed the numbers and letters on the custom and excise seal of counterfeit Golden Virginia tobacco.
Does anybody know these codes?

May 21, 2011
Reply to Steve 9 may 2011
by: robert

Hi Steve, read your letter. Which credit card company reimbursed you? My credit card company said I wasn't entitled to any repayment under section 75. thanks

May 21, 2011
fake golden virginia in Cyprus
by: Anonymous

I have recently been offered some cheap GV; the packet did not look right and the text seemed too big and did not have the sealed freshness or barcode or any codes atall on it.

And it does not smell right and the bacci was loose and very large strands and felt damp, smells awful and is very hard to smoke.

The colours are wrong on the packaging. If this the same as you are getting over in Cyprus; if so it's now being sold in the UK.

May 09, 2011
by: steve

Just an update on the outcome for my claim from my credit card company for the Golden/v I Bought from the shop in the plaza.(Top of the Tops) (they gave me all my money back in full under the faulty goods act so I should think that they have been in touch with the police in Paphos to investagate the Dirty Fxxxing Bxxxards who are out to scam the people who visit Cyprus.

Best of Luck to everyone in getting your money back,


May 07, 2011
FAKE Paphos tobacco I KNOW
by: yvonne

I bought 3 kilo in November Golden Virgina in Paphos , from a shop I usually go to. Found out when back home it was dry and unsmokeable.

I went back to visit my sister in March this year and found this shop was closed for refurbishment. We know who they are and won't be spending any more money there. Went to Theos opposite Debenhams that came recommmended and will always go there in future.

May 07, 2011
Paphos tobacco fake shops - THEOS opp Debenhams and MC cost price shop
by: Anonymous

Hi there all

Just a quickie, be aware of both THEOS and MC market tobacco. I just returned from Cyprus yesterday. After reading all the comments on fake tobacco and cigarettes, I made a concious effort to first buy a pack to try it and then go back and buy my allowance.

My first visit was to THEOS opp. Debenhams. Well I got hit by a barrage of defensive comments about fake cigarettes and tobacco before I had even opened my mouth. If there is one thing I have learned is that confronting a person will make him defensive, especially if he has something to hide or gain.

Well after about 10 minutes of ranting and raving by the owner I decided to purchase a packet of golden Virginia 50 g and a box of 5 x 50 g off the shelf. I paid by credit card, got my reciept and left.

Did the same thing at MC cost price shop about 5 minutes later. When I got to my hotel room I compared the tobacco pouches to the pouch I had bought from home and saw a difference immediately.

Both shops had sold me a legitimate loose packet but in the box of 5 there were 2 fake packets of golden V. I noticed that the forgers are getting better at their forgeries. There is no sealed with freshness writing on the packet and the packets are identical outside.

Well once I opened the packets it smelled like cat wee, it was disguting. The tobacco was like lint and dark as if they had poured water or dampened what was in there to make it feel heavier.

I assume the smell was rotting tobacco. Well so much for buying from a reputable shop like THEOS or going to a reputable thief life MC cost price shop and thinking things will change. One uses his supposed "reputation" as a selling ploy and the other just keeps on robbing everyone.

Bottom line don't buy anything you can smoke in Cyprus.

Save your money.

May 05, 2011
Paphos Golden Virginia fake tobacco
by: Anonymous

I wrote here about 1mth ago relating to the 6kg I bought in Paphos. Unsmokable , just like the others. However, like most I can hardly just throw £500-£600 away (£1500 if rebought in UK) so I am getting through it bit by bit.

I have written twice to Imperial Tobacco now. First reply contained the default 'not ours where did you buy' form and nothing else.
You may note however that this form contains no reference number to your 'case'

I have written again asking for an update and also it would be nice to have the sample I had enclosed (unopened 50g pouch) replaced at the very least.

No reply to date (5 weeks).

It would be nice (I think!) to have an idea what additional toxins I ) and all those who are smoking the dodgy stuff) am ingesting!

What is most disappointing is the fact this seems to have gone on for quite some time and continues to do so despite Imperial Tobacco being aware of the situation.

I see others wrote to IT as early as last year. I doubt they were the first either!

Apr 20, 2011
counterfeit tobacco
by: robert

I have been to Paphos now for the last 10 yrs, the last 3 or 4 years I have heard rumours about forged/fake tobacco. I thought it was just the shop keepers trying to make you buy from their shop.

I have used this one particular shop for years called MC MINI MARKET by the harbour to buy ciggerettes, alcohol and roll up baccy. They are very good for exchange rates as well. I have a friend who lives in Paphos and he uses them all the time.

Last visit in November I purchased 18 boxes of golden virginia and like all other readers it was black dry and smelt of stables. I contacted visa credit card they keep giving me excuses and quotes from section 75. The final letter was to visit this site, financial ombudsman not interested.

Next time I visit Cyprus I will buy from the airport. I am going to take all the tobacco back to the shop and see what happens. It
might be a coincidence but the writing on pouches is in Russian!

Apr 15, 2011
Fake Golden Virginia - Shop Info Anyone?
by: Pam


My husband bought his entire allowance late last year in the harbour area and 2 full boxes costing circa 130 Euros is un smokable. It is extremely dry and has a terrible odour. We have always purchased our tobacco products from the same shop but will not be buying it from there in future.

I too have sent a sample pouch to Imperial Tobacco and received a letter today asking me to complete a questionnaire but I do not have the address of the shop - does anyone out there know? It is a shop in a small square - there is a book shop and art shop next door and a large restaurant opposite. I know I'm clutching at straws but if you can help please do so. If only we had kept the receipts. We will be back in September and will be paying the shop a visit.

The strange thing was we purchased it over a few days and he remembered us from last year and told us not to take it from the front as it was old stock.

Imperial Tobacco have told me there initial analysis indicates the tobacco was not manufactured by them and that it has gone to their lab for further tests.

Apr 14, 2011
Dodgy Golden Virginia in Paphos
by: M&G

Beware anyone shopping for tobacco to bring home from Paphos-we nearly got scammed a couple of days ago near the harbour next to the diving shop-a costprice tobacco and alchohol shop that also sold perfumes.

We bought a sealed 6x5 pouch pack with a red sticker across the front.As luck would have it-we ran out of tobacco and had to open one of these.Inside we found something pretty rank-to compare it-it was as different as golden syrup is to black treacle in colour-smelled dank and stale-as if it had come off a compost heap!!

Needless to say we took it back for a refund.Luckily the shop was full of tourists and he couldn't hide it quick enough under the counter(the robbing so and so)

Luckily when we went to catch the bus from outside Debenhams we noticed Theo's shop opposite.Before we could say anything about the bad shop we were warned about the dangers of iffy baccy and were offered the chance of opening any pouches they sold us,that is how honest they are.

We would recommend anyone after tobacco to drop in at Theo's and be confident of getting the real thing.A big vote of confidence is the fact they have their name and address on their bags as opposed to the others who all use plain bags with no contact information on.

We strongly advise asking to open pouches prior to purchase as a safeguard.An honest vendor with nothing to hide will not mind. Hope this info will come in handy for future holiday makers to Cyprus.

Apr 14, 2011
Fake Tobacco
by: Anonymous

I am sorry to say that they are still selling fake tobacco at the shop with a sign saying 'Cheaper than our Neighbours' Company name 'Top of the Tops Trading Ltd'
We are very lucky as we opened our Golden Virginia 1.5kg before returning home (13th April 2011)and noticed the fake tobacco so my husband and I paid them a visit, we asked to see the manager, we had a coffee whilst waiting, went back to the shop and the shop assistant said the Manager had been and gone, what did we want us to do about it, we asked for our money back in cash, she didn't query anything and they paid up.
We also met another couple that purchased fake GV x 6 kg back in Sept, they brought from the same shop but their receipt said a different company name with different VAT number, they returned back to Cyprus to try and get their money back. We all went to the shop together, safety in numbers! we all had a full refund. Happy ending!
Keep your receipts! this helps.
For any further Info:

Apr 06, 2011
Paphos Tobacco
by: Anonymous

Lasr Oct I bought 6kg (4x 1.5kg bulk packs) from the ship mentioned on the harbour.

Foul smelling and hard (to say the least!) to smoke.
It contained chunks that you could use as kindling, yet was dry and dusty at the bottom, like the contents of a teabag.
I have written and sent a sample to Imperial Tobacco. To date, all I recieved back (2mths now) is a standard report form to identify the shop.
No compensation, not even the enclosed sample was replaced!

The shop is :
The Tobacco Shop/Money Exchange
Psphoa Harbour

One thing to note is that it wasn't cheap. At least , not cheap for Cyprus. Very much in line with the going rate for the area. In fact only a few Euro (for the weight) less than I could have bought from the airport . Its not as though buyers are saving 20-30% on the local rate , that would raise suspicion.
A legitimate purchase was made from a supposedly legitimate source.

Mar 21, 2011
Dodgy golden virginia
by: Anonymous

To you all we have bacome another victim of this scam. The dirty Fxxxxing Bxxxxxxs, this is the same shop in the plaza we bought 6kgs, but 3kgs have the red tag on. They are the dodgy ones.

It smells like dead fish and if you try to roll it it is like sand; they had mixed in the dodgy packets with the good ones. We found out a couple of days after returning back to the UK on the 2nd March 2011. We have rung the phone no. on the receipt but as you can guess the line is dead.

We have kept our receipt and made a claim with our credit card company as faulty goods, hopefully we may be able to claim something back.

The name of this shop is( Top of the Tops trading Ltd Posidonos ave, the myrra complex shop 30/31 kato papos,) Keep well away we thought this was a proper tobbacconist. Hope this is a warning to other people.


Mar 09, 2011
Paphos Fake tabaco
by: TB

In addition to my previous comments on this site, I have also now forwarded them in an email to Paphos police headquarters, Cyprus tourist organisation and Cyprus Chambers of Commerce (Their equivalent to our trading standards) hoping that at least one of the above authotities will push for action against these culprits.
If I get any replies, I will update this site.

Mar 08, 2011
Paphos fake tobacco in Cyprus
by: TB

I have been travelling back and forth to Paphos for a good few years now and have encountered all the previous scams mentioned, the first was when you buy the prepacked 6 boxes of 5 packs Golden Virginia pouches, what they actually do is slice the cellophane wrapper at the bottom of the package, this allows them to open the bottom packages and take a packet of tobacco out of each box, they then pull the cellophane back up and apply a large sticker over where they slice and they state the BARGAIN price on this sticker; you dont think anything is untoward until you are home and open all the boxes to find the ones on the bottom with 4 packs instead of 5.

When I returned to Paphos again I went to the main police headquarters in the old town and told the police but they did not want to know, stating it was not a police matter but a consumer matter; I had a lengthy debate with the police as I stated it was deception and theft, but they were just not interested.

Undettered I went back into the shop, (its sits at the rear of a little plaza just off the promenade and is next to a diving school, you can also cut through to Papantonios and Debenhams here),I picked up a carton of 6 packs and peeled the sticker back to reveal it indeed had been sliced, I then went to the counter and confronted the owner and told him he ripped me off, I then opened all the bottom packs in front of him and showed him there was only 4 packs in each, he suddenly lost his ability to speak English and couldn't understand what I was saying, I told him I was taking 4 boxes, to replace the tobacco he robbed me of and I walked out the shop.

Recently a friend of mine bought tobacco out of the very same shop, they purchased 2 boxes of 5 pouches of Golden Virginia, due to all the problems with counterfeit tobacco in Paphos, they opened the cartons outside the shop, there were indeed 10 pouches as there should be but they became very wary as all the pouches had different plastic wrappers, some had red writing stating "sealed for freshness" they thought it strange that a sealed box had different wrapped pouches so they opened the pouches to find really dark tobacco and the same smelled strongly like a Urine smell, they took it back into the shop, when this time the girl behind the counter suddenly became incoherent in English, they demanded their money back which the girl did without any quibble.

The police or someone needs to take an interest in this as tourists are getting ripped off big style here.

Feb 22, 2011
tobacco in Cyprus
by: daniel

I know every time I smoke golden virgina in cyprus I feel ill lol

Dec 06, 2010
We need to stop fake tobacco in Paphos
by: Anonymous

We also have recieved fake golden virginia, from a shop near the Harbour in Cyprus,could anyone name the shop as I am reporting them to Imperial Tobacco but they need the name of the shop, I know it is not far away from Mc Donalds only a little shop.
Thank you

Dec 05, 2010
Fake tabacco
by: Anonymous

We have also bought some tobacco from a shop by Paphos harbour we bought 6x10 pouches all are fake they have red writing on the packet saying sealed for freshnees,we have to do something about this as he has riped us off, I am going back in November next year l am going to stand outside the shop and warn everybody.

Nov 13, 2010
Short changed in Paphos with tobacco
by: Anonymous

I bought 4 x 1.5 kg sealed packs of GV down by Paphos Harbour and when I got back to UK and opened them I found some of them only had 4 pouches per box - ripped off or what!! I now buy in Paphos Old Town and have had no problems.

Nov 11, 2010
counterfeit tobacco
by: cypruswez

The fake cigarretes and tobacco are so well packaged it is almost impossible to tell the difference. In the UK I found the only detectable difference between a fake pack and the real thing was the thin gold line near the filter tip. Everything else was convincing. (except you couldn't smoke them.)
When buying in Cyprus, ask local Brits where they buy their tobacco. Keep receipts as well as the name of the store or kiosk. Beware!! Cheap usually means fake. Check out supermarket prices, or buy at the airport.

Nov 07, 2010
Golden Virginia 50G from Cyprus

I bought some Golden Virginia from cyprus just 3 days ago it was a box of 5 x 50grm in the new resealable packs sitting here smoking it now and i think it actually tastes and burns better than the shop bought packs in the uk . Why don't Imperial Tobacco show pictures of the fake packs and identifying marks on the packs serial nos batch numbers etc. I find the fake stuff is very clumpy not easy to roll a straight cig also has large bits of lighter coloured tobacco in it and makes your throat rough as a badgers ****

Nov 03, 2010
counterfeit tobacco
by: Cypruswez

I experienced counterfeit tobacco in the U.K. before I made the move to Cyprus. The packaging was identical but the tobacco, or should I say content was evil. Try smoking bits of an old carpet mixed with an old car tyre and you should get the idea.
Do complain. Name outlets that sell fake cigarettes to tourists. Write to the Cyrus Tourist office. Generally complain and become a nuisance. Someone may take notice.
Its a sad fact that everything from medicines, car spares, aircraft parts, games consoles and mobile phones are being counterfeited.
Be aware.. if its too good to be true...it's dodgy.

Nov 02, 2010
Fake rolling tobacco bought in Paphos
by: Pete

I also bought a lot of golden virginia from a shop in Paphos and it is disgusting. Have just sent a sample of it off to Imperial tobacco ............a definite farm smell associated with it !!

Nov 01, 2010
I got stung by fake tobacco too
by: Anonymous

Father-in-law bought us some back from Paphos too; the stuff is disgusting thinking of getting in touch with Imperial tabaccos or even trading standards, it not fair especially in these hard times.

Sep 20, 2010
Dodgy cigarettes in the U.K and elsewhere
by: Anonymous

When I lived in the U.K. I came across counterfeit cigarettes sold in corner shops, and even pub vending machines.
The packaging was excellent and almost impossible to differentiate from the real thing.
The difference was in the content. Almost certainly not tobacco. Wherever you travel, if its really cheap, it's probably really dodgy.

Sep 20, 2010
Buying tobacco in Cyprus
by: Helen

I haven't heard about fake/dodgy tabacco/cigarettes before in Cyprus. We don't smoke. But it doesn't surprise me as there are just so many people living here making a living from all sorts of "schemes."

My advice would be to only buy from a Kiosk or supermarket rather than from a market stall or the "street". I suspect there is little you can do unless you remember where you bought the tobacco and if it was a shop, contact the local police in Paphos.

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