Two Ryanair airline stewards who admitted smuggling 13,800 cigarettes through customs at Liverpool John Lennon Airport have walked free from court, but both have quit their jobs following the hearing.
Gemma Phillips, 26, and Adam McEvatt, 28 were arrested on August 21 as their flight from Tenerife touched down at Liverpool John Lennon airport when tobacco was found in their luggage.
The stewards, who were not on duty at the time, pleaded guilty to evading excise payment of £3,526 on the smuggled cigarettes.
Manchester Magistrates Court ordered them to pay £85 in costs.
A spokesman for Ryanair confirmed that the pair no longer worked for the company.
A spokeswoman for Border Force, the enforcement arm of the UK Border Agency commented: “Tobacco smuggling is serious and increases the tax burden on everyone else. Revenue from cigarettes and tobacco helps fund public services.
“Tobacco smugglers are tracked by Border Force and HMRC and repeat offenders will be prosecuted.”
Laws restrict people travelling from the Canary Islands to the UK to carrying 200 cigarettes and 250 grams of tobacco per person.