Monthly Archives: June 2011

Russia gangs ‘help cigarette scams’

From: Belfast Telegraph

Ireland’s organised crime gangs have joined forces with Russian criminals to flood the country with counterfeit cigarettes, it has been claimed.Illegal cigarettes smuggled from China, the Middle East and countries bordering the EU account for about a fifth of tobacco smoked in the country.

The black market industry is costing the economy 250 million euro in lost revenue each year, as well as job losses in the retail sector.

The head of an EU task force on tobacco smuggling revealed it was a significant problem in Ireland, with criminals importing small amounts frequently.

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Philip Morris USA Sues Miami Retailers to Combat Counterfeit Cigarette Sales



RICHMOND, Va., Jun 20, 2011 (BUSINESS WIRE) — Philip Morris USA (PM USA) filed a civil lawsuit on Friday against 17 retailers in the Miami area for selling counterfeit Marlboro(R) cigarettes. This lawsuit is part of a multi-faceted campaign by PM USA aimed at combating the sale of counterfeit Marlboro(R) cigarettes in south Florida.

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Look How Easy it is to Import Counterfeit Chinese Cigarettes

From: Minyanville

By Justin Rohrlich

As tobacco taxes rise across the country — and around the world — two things seem to be happening.

Some people quit. And some people simply quit paying full price.

When there’s a dishonest buck to be made, someone inevitably steps in to make it.

While Indian reservations are what most people immediately think of when discussing untaxed black market cigarettes, counterfeit smokes coming in from China have also overrun the market.

In Spain, according to the FT, “the sale of non-taxed, smuggled or counterfeit cigarettes from China has risen in one year from 0.5 per cent of the total market to 4.6 per cent.”

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Sydney flooded with illegal cigarettes

From: The Telegraph.com.au

SYDNEY is flooded with blackmarket cigarettes selling for as little as half the price of a genuine pack, but peddlers are avoiding punishment because it is tobacco companies who catch them.

The Daily Telegraph was able to purchase Chinese-made counterfeit cigarettes from outlets at Kings Cross and Warwick Farm.

British American Tobacco (BAT) conducts about 1000 undercover purchases each year and has taken legal action against more than 100 retailers in the past three years, effectively suing them for copyright infringements.

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Counterfeit Sales in Spain Increase Over 900%

From: Financial Times

Cigarette sales get stubbed

The bitter price war being fought in Spain’s uniform brown and yellow tobacconists, or estancos, coincided with a January ban on public smoking, Miles Johnson reports from Madrid. But prohibition does not tell the whole story.

The price of a packet of cigarettes in Spain, long known as a destination for Europeans looking to stock up on cheap cigarettes, last year rose on average by 30 per cent, or 65 cents, after the Spanish government increased tobacco tax and VAT.

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