POLICE seized a Ferrari, Rolex watches and £50,000 in cash in a raid on suspected beauty industry cowboys importing illegal, potentially disfiguring products.
Officers impounded the £240,000 Berlinetta F12 and nicked three people after finding 10,000 vials of Botox, fillers and numbing agents.
Police have seized a Ferrari from suspected beauty industry cowboys importing illegal productsAndy Kelvin / Kelvinmedia
10,000 unlicensed vials of Botox, fillers and numbing agents, brought in from South Korea, were found at a storage unit in BoltonAndy Kelvin / Kelvinmedia
Officers also seized £50,000 in cashAndy Kelvin / Kelvinmedia
They were destined for sale on social media and websites or direct to salons which undercut clinics using genuine products.
We joined cops and the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) on Operation Spyker — part of a drive to hit gangs coining it in from knock-off products in a crime now rife in the beauty industry.
Det Insp James Coles, from the Greater Manchester Police Economic Crime Unit, added: “People are diversifying the ways in which they are committing crime, including with illicit medicines.
“They are making lots of money, as you can see by the assets we seize.
“Hundreds, thousands, millions — it’s not taxed.”
Andy Morling, MHRA head of enforcement, said: “It’s a global trade exploiting society’s concerns about body image.
“These are organised criminals and profits are huge.
“It’s all about cash.
“We’re proud of taking money off them.
“That really hurts them.”
He added: “If we have not licensed these products for use there’s no guarantee they are safe.
“At best, it’s a genuine product that hasn’t been through UK quality checks.
“At worst, however, it could be anything.
“Sticking that under your skin is a Russian roulette.”
Of the culprits, he said: “They don’t give a monkey’s about the harm they cause.”
Dr Catherine Fairris, of the British College of Aesthetic Medicine, meanwhile, said the cheap imports lured customers unaware of the regulations and possible dangers.
MHRA head of enforcement Andy Morling said there is a global trade exploiting society’s concerns about body imageAndy Kelvin / Kelvinmedia
The products were destined for sale on social media – or direct to salons which undercut clinics using genuine productsAndy Kelvin / Kelvinmedia
She said: “The wrong doses of botulinum can make your eyelids or parts of your mouth droop.
“Our members are seeing an increasing number of patients asking for help when something has gone wrong.
“We have a perfect storm where the influence of social media and reality TV mean the pressure to look perfect affects all ages.”
The Sun’s Had Our Fill campaign has pushed for tougher laws and already seen a ban on procedures for under-18s.
The Sun’s Had Our Fill campaign has pushed for tougher laws on fillersGetty