New Illicit Tobacco Laws- A positive step forward

From: Convenience & Impulse Retailing


A media release from Jos de Bruin, MGA Independent Retailers. 

The illicit tobacco trade in Australia is costing huge dollars in tax revenue and the Federal Government has been determined to bring this costly criminal activity under control. In addition to the crippling economic effects, this insidious illegal tobacco trading is fuelling an increase in organised crime in Australia, particularly in Melbourne and Sydney. Record numbers of illegal cigarettes and quantities of illicit tobacco are constantly being uncovered by federal police and customs officials. The importation of illegal tobacco is getting out of control and our laws need to be tightened to combat these crimes. Jos de Bruin, CEO of Master Grocers Australia has welcomed the proactive initiative of the Federal Government in taking a firm stand to help stamp out this serious and destructive, illegal tobacco market by introducing new laws.

The Turnbull Government has, as part of its determination to combat this illicit tobacco trading, introduced two bills into Parliament.

Mr. de Bruin said: “The bills reflect the Government’s determination to halt the growth of criminal activity in illegal tobacco products. The newly proposed penalties for excise offences will increase to 10 years imprisonment. Furthermore, there will be heavy fines for any convictions that involve large commercial quantities of illicit tobacco and they will increase to $2.25 million, where the tobacco weighs 500 kilos.”

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