Monthly Archives: January 2014

Standing by: Govt stands helpless as illicit trade grows

From: The Express Tribune

By Farooq Baloch

KARACHI: Despite having a robust regulatory framework, it seems the federation continues to face problems in fighting illicit tobacco trade, which still accounts for more than a quarter of the country’s total cigarette consumption.

Illicit tobacco trade refers to the business of smuggled or counterfeit cigarettes, or other tobacco products that are sold without paying applicable duties and taxes.

Several agencies including Inland Revenue Intelligence, Customs Intelligence, Police, Federal Investigation Agency and the Rangers are fighting this menace. This illegal business, however, accounts for 25% of the country’s total cigarette sales, according to an international study titled ‘Asia-11: Illicit Tobacco Indicator 2012’.

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Five Sentenced in Connection with Cigarette Smuggling Ring Operating in North and South Carolina

From: Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) and Anne M. Tompkins, United States Attorney, Western District of North Carolina

The Defendants Were Caught in ATF and IRS-CI Undercover Investigation Involving More than 486,000 Cartons of Purportedly Stolen Cigarettes Worth Over $20 Million

CHARLOTTE, N.C. – Five of twelve conspirators charged with running a cigarette smuggling ring in North and South Carolina were sentenced in U.S. District Court on Wednesday, January 22, 2014 on cigarette trafficking and money laundering charges, announced Anne M. Tompkins, U.S. Attorney for the Western District of North Carolina. The smuggling ring was uncovered over the course of “Operation Burn Notice,” a multi-agency investigation into the interstate transport and sales of stolen property and money laundering in Charlotte and Greensboro, N.C. and Columbia, S.C.

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5 men sentenced in cigarette smuggling ring

From: WLOS ABC13 News

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — Five men are headed to federal prison over their roles in what authorities say was a $20 million cigarette smuggling operation based in the Carolinas.

U.S. District Court Chief Judge Frank D. Whitney in Charlotte handed down sentences Wednesday ranging from 14 months to 18 years in prison. The men were convicted last year of conspiring to sell 486,000 cartons of what they believed to be stolen cigarettes at retail outlets across North Carolina and South Carolina.

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Counterfeit cigarette packs ‘so good’ professionals can’t tell the difference

From: TheJournal.ie

The Standardised Packaging of Tobacco Bill 2013 was discussed by the Oireachtas today with a focus on the impact it could have on the black market.

“THE POORER YOU are the more likely you are to have your life destroyed by cigarettes.”

Those were the words of Sinn Féin TD Sandra McLellan at the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Health and Children this morning.

The all-party group met this morning to discuss plain packaging on cigarettes and the effects it may have on children and smokers if introduced.

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Crime gangs flooding Fife with fake cigarettes

From: The Courier.co.uk

By Leeza Clark

Organised criminals are doing a roaring trade selling illicit cigarettes to unsuspecting Fifers.   

The ease with which cheap tobacco is available was unearthed in a study commissioned by Philip Morris International, which manufactures seven of the world’s top tobacco brands.

A team of undercover test purchasers, led by former Scotland Yard Detective Chief Inspector Will O’Reilly, uncovered a trail of tobacco traders.

These ranged from illicit to counterfeit cigarettes that have been “made to look like the real thing”.

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