A diesel laundering plant capable of producing over eight million litres of illicit fuel a year has been uncovered by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) in a cattle shed in Northern Ireland.

Officers from HMRC, the Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) and the DOE Environmental Crime Unit searched a farm in the Crossmaglen area of Co Armagh and discovered the plant, which was laundering green diesel.

Nearly ten tonnes of toxic waste and 1,000 litres of suspected illicit fuel together with pumps and equipment were removed from the site during the multi-agency operation.

It is estimated that the laundering plant was capable of evading over £5m in lost duty and taxes per year. Investigations into the seizures are continuing.

Pat Curtis, national oils co-ordinator, HMRC, said: “The fact that nearly ten tonnes of toxic waste were recovered from a working cattle farm shows a total disregard for the wellbeing and safety of these animals. The individuals involved in this fraud will stop at nothing in order to line their pockets with criminal cash.

“We will continue to work with our partners in the Organised Crime Task Force to combat this illegal activity.”