Editor’s Note: The Virginia State Crime Commission report “Illegal Cigarette Trafficking” is attached here.
From the report:
To achieve lower costs, traffickers can arrange for their cigarettes to be manufactured overseas. Frequently, these cigarettes are counterfeits. The packaging used in popular brands of cigarettes is duplicated; however, the cigarettes inside will differ substantially from the genuine articles. A number of recent studies have reported that the manufacturing facilities used in the production of counterfeit cigarettes have little or no quality control; the counterfeit cigarettes, in turn, have alarmingly high levels of contaminants, including dangerous levels of toxic metals. In short, counterfeit cigarettes present a serious public health risk.