A massive store of equipment capable of processing thousands of litres of laundered fuel was dismantled by Revenue and Customs in Northern Ireland, it was revealed.
Revenue officers discovered 20 tonnes of unused laundering agent and two 30,000-litre fuel tanks ready to supply illicit laundering plants anywhere in the country at the site in north Lisburn.
The industrial units are believed to be a hub, where equipment used in the process is made and distributed, as well as serving as a centre where any hazardous waste is returned for disposal, a Customs spokeswoman said.
Ten tonnes of hazardous waste and machinery and equipment were removed from the units by officers from Revenue and Customs during Friday night's raids.
Mike Connolly, assistant director of specialist investigations at Customs, said: "The equipment being made in these industrial units could have been supplied anywhere in the province for the sole purpose of producing illicit fuel.
"The fact that our officers discovered a skip-lorry being used to transport the toxic waste shows that those involved in this activity have total disregard for the environment and public safety."
A forklift truck, skip lorry, teleporter, generators, and 50 large fuel pods were also removed from the site. The operation was assisted by the Environmental Heritage Agency and investigations are continuing.