Monthly Archives: January 2014

Illegal cigs light up crime

From: Times Live


About 30% of all cigarettes consumed in this country are the products of illicit dealing.

According to the Tobacco Industry of Southern Africa, illicit cigarettes are either manufactured locally and not declared to avoid taxation, or are smuggled in.

Since 2010, said the organisation’s CEO, Francois van der Merwe, the government had lost more than R15-billion in taxes to illegal smokes.

SARS spokesman Adrian Lackay said cigarette smuggling had become very lucrative.

We are seeing the migration of big role players in the narcotics trade to tobacco smuggling,” said Lackay.

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Major Bust Of Smuggling Ring In Benque; Products Come From Belize


Guatemalan Customs Officials. 

A diagram of the group’s criminal structure on the Guatemalan police website shows that they are called the Cigarettes Crew, and that’s because one of the major things they smuggled was cigarettes from Belize.  And we don’t mean a few cartons; we mean container-fuls.

This helps to explain why there was such a flare-up ten days ago about the container of Chinese Made Modern Cigarettes.  According to our investigations, hundreds of containers of this are brought into Belize annually destined for the northern and western free zones – and much of it is smuggled into Mexico, Guatemala, Salvador, and into Mexico from Guatemala.

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Contraband cigarette problem in Ontario runs deep

From: Toronto Sun

Candice Malcolm, Special to the Toronto Sun

As the Ontario Liberal government of Premier Kathleen Wynne desperately looks for revenue tools to fund new projects and meet its commitment of balancing the budget by 2018, it is overlooking a very obvious source of revenue: Forgone taxes from the sale of contraband tobacco products.

The Canadian Taxpayers Federation estimates that in Ontario alone, the provincial and federal governments lose as much as $1.1 billion annually to missing tax revenues from the contraband tobacco trade.

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The Effect of Cigarette Tax Rates on Illicit Trade: Lessons Learned in Canada

From: Reason Foundation

Katie Furtick, Candice Malcolm and Anthony Randazzo

U.S. President Barack Obama is proposing to raise the federal cigarette tax by nearly $1.00 per pack, hoping to bring in additional tax revenue to help fund universal preschool. Likewise, earlier this year legislators in Massachusetts, Minnesota and New Hampshire put forth—and passed—proposals to increase their state’s cigarette tax. Such proposals to increase cigarette or tobacco taxes are a politically expedient way to add to state or federal coffers while ostensibly reducing consumption. Since 2000, U.S. states have increased state cigarette tax rates more than 100 times and, generally, smoking prevalence in the U.S. has continued to decline, but is this decline caused by the increase in taxes? If so, what would happen to tobacco consumption if tax rates on cigarettes are cut?

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U.S. Attorney’s office collects over $26.5M in criminal/civil actions in Missouri


KANSAS CITY, Mo. – United States Attorney Tammy Dickinson announced
today that the Western District of Missouri collected more than $26.5
million in criminal and civil actions in Fiscal Year 2013. Of this
amount, more than $14.8 million was collected in criminal actions, more
than $6.2 million was collected in civil actions and nearly $5.5 million
was collected through the seizure of assets that were forfeited to the


US v. Sheffler, et al. : $3.8 million

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