Ban Damage: Canada Smuggled Cigarettes Page 3

Canada Gray Market: smuggled cigarettes

Read More:? Canada Smuggled Cigarettes Page 4


Ten People Arrested for Possession of Contraband Tobacco during Multi-Agency Tobacco Smuggling Operation
September 18, 2008
CORNWALL, ON, Sept. 18 /CNW/ – On the 16th of September, 2008, the Cornwall RCMP Detachment along with their partner, Canada Border Services Agency organized an enforcement operation targeting known organizations involved in the smuggling of contraband tobacco from the Cornwall area. Participating agencies working together during this operation were officers from the Cornwall RCMP Detachment, Kingston RCMP Detachment, Central St. Lawrence Valley RCMP Detachment-Valleyfield office, Canada Border Services Agency, Ontario Provincial Police, Ontario Provincial Police Organized Crime Enforcement Team (POCET), Quebec Provincial Police and the Ontario Ministry of Revenue Special Investigations Branch.
Individuals and vehicles involved in contraband tobacco smuggling departing the Cornwall area towards Montreal and Toronto were identified and intercepted. This joint operation focused on targeting individuals who belong to various organized crime groups which facilitate the distribution of the contraband tobacco throughout Canada. The result of this operation permitted the partner law enforcement agencies to intercept eleven different vehicles in the following regions:
??? 1 vehicle in Prescott, Ontario
??? 6 vehicles in Cornwall, Ontario
??? 2 vehicles in Coteau-du-Lac, Quebec
??? 2 vehicles in St-Zotique, Quebec
??? >>
These interceptions permitted the arrest of nine individuals (5 from Cornwall, Ontario, 1 from Ohsweken, Ontario, 1 from Glen Walter, Ontario, 1 from St-Regis, Quebec, 1 from Ste-Lucie-des-Laure, Quebec) who will be charged for the possession of a tobacco product not properly stamped according to the Excise Act 2001 as well as being charged under authority of the Provincial Tobacco Tax Act. The tenth individual arrested is identified as Dwayne David, a 46 year old resident of Akwesasne, Ontario who was charged with possession of a tobacco product not properly stamped. He is currently being held in custody for a Bail hearing that will take place Monday September 22nd, 2008 in Valleyfield, Quebec.
-?? 11 vehicles and 1 trailer.
??? -?? 15,040 assorted resealable bags each containing 200 cigarettes seized represents 3,008,000 cigarettes.
??? -?? 510 assorted cartons each containing 200 cigarettes seized represents 102,000 cigarettes. >>
Reducing the threat and impact of organized crime is one of the RCMP’s strategic priorities. Our enforcement resources are directed at criminal organizations involved in the smuggling, manufacturing and distribution of contraband tobacco products. Recognizing the multi-jurisdictional nature of tobacco control, the RCMP works with a variety of partners at all levels of government, domestically and internationally, in developing strategies to address the illicit tobacco market.

________________________________________
Charges follow seizure of $2 million worth of counterfeit cigarettes -BC
Graeme Wood,, Vancouver Sun
Published: Tuesday, September 09, 2008
Counterfeit cigarettes discovered at Deltaport.
METRO VANCOUVER — A seizure of nearly $2 million worth of counterfeit cigarettes that moved through Deltaport on Aug. 6 has led to charges against four men in Ontario, according to Cpl. Norm Massie of the RCMP E division border integrity unit in Surrey.
Charged with unlawful possession of tobacco products contrary to the Excise Act are Gou Ping Wu of Stouffville, and Wai Sun Yeung, Yi Huang and Kai Fa Choi, all of Markham.
They are expected to appear in court Oct. 10.
The cigarettes, branded as Players and du Maurier, were discovered by the Canada Border Services Agency and the RCMP. They came from China and were destined for street merchants in Ontario.
Massie said his team counted more than 38,000 cigarette cartons, which nearly filled the 40-foot container they were in.
Each carton has a street value of about $50.
In a sting operation, the border integrity unit allowed the container to go by rail to Ontario where it was met by the accused. They were arrested after the cigarettes were moved into two five-tonne trucks.
Counterfeiting is a lucrative business for criminals and its? economic damages are underestimated by the public, said Massie.
“People’s views on counterfeiting have to change,” he said.
The seized cigarettes are worth about $1.6 million in duties and taxes, according to an RCMP statement.
Walt Charlton, the director of the special investigations branch for the ministry of small business and revenue, which oversees tobacco sales in B.C., said the seizure was “significant.” Although there is no big counterfeit cigarette problem in the Lower Mainland, he said the cigarettes can be found around town.

________________________________________
Akwesasne Mohawk Police Service vehicle stop leads to RCMP seizure of 300,000 cigarettes -ON
??? AKWESASNE, ON, Sept. 8 /CNW/ – On September 4th, 2008 at 8:32 p.m., an officer from the Akwesasne Mohawk Police Service followed a 1999 Dodge Caravan that was speeding on Island Road in Akwesasne, Ontario. While being followed, the officer observed the van travel off the road in an attempt to evade the police. When the van tried to get back onto the road, it collided with the police vehicle. The driver of the van was then observed exiting his vehicle and was immediately picked up by an unidentified individual driving an All Terrain Vehicle and flee the scene.
Fortunately, the officer was not injured in the collision. Upon approaching the van, the officer observed several cardboard boxes of cigarettes inside and contacted the Cornwall RCMP Detachment for assistance and RCMP officers attended the scene. The driver was not located and the investigation continues. The RCMP seized a total of 1,500 resealable bags of cigarettes which represents 300,000 cigarettes estimated to be worth $33,000. It is believed that the cigarettes were manufactured in the United States. The 1999 Dodge Caravan, estimated to be worth $3,075, was also seized.
“We encourage motorists and the public to watch out for those who try to avoid police on our roadways as it has become dangerous” said Sgt. Michael Harvey of the RCMP. “These types of situations are on the rise and we will continue to work together to ensure that our community members are safe.”

________________________________________
$50,000 of tobacco taken from barn -ON
September 09, 2008
The Hamilton Spectator BRANTFORD (Sep 9, 2008)
Brantford County OPP are investigating the weekend theft of about $50,000 worth of baled tobacco from a farm in the Burford area.
OPP spokesperson Larry Plummer said thieves entered a storage barn some time between 8 p.m., Friday and 5 a.m. Saturday and removed 480 bales through the front doors. Each bale weighed about 40 pounds.
Plummer said the tobacco was dried and pressed and would have been ready for market. The farmer was probably holding on to the product and watching the market for the best commodity price.
Because of the size of the heist, Plummer said police believe the thieves must have used a large truck to remove the cargo. They will likely try to sell it on the black market.
It was the biggest tobacco burglary Plummer could recall in this area. If you have any information, you’re asked to contact police at 519-442-2241 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477?

________________________________________
O.P.P. vehicle stops lead to RCMP seizure of 348,200 contraband cigarettes
September 5, 2008
SOUTH GLENGARRY, ON, Sept. 5 /CNW/ – Two Kahnawake, Quebec residents are facing charges under the Excise Act 2001 for possession of unstamped tobacco following the stop of two vehicles by the Ontario Provincial Police on Highway 401 eastbound in South Glengarry, Ontario on September 3rd, 2008.
The first vehicle described as a 1996 Toyota Avalon was stopped at 2:10 p.m. by O.P.P. officers. The officers observed cardboard boxes of contraband cigarettes covered with a black sheet inside the vehicle. RCMP officers from the Cornwall Detachment were contacted to assist. RCMP officers seized 891 resealable bags of contraband cigarettes and 100 cartons of Putter’s Lights brand cigarettes which are estimated to be worth $21,802. The driver who is a 25 year old male resident of Kahnawake, Quebec was arrested and will appear at the Alexandria court on November 5th, 2008. The 1996 Toyota Avalon estimated to be worth $8,750 was also seized.
The second vehicle described as a 1997 GM Sunfire was stopped at 2:21 p.m. by O.P.P. officers. Again the officers observed cardboard boxes of contraband cigarettes inside the vehicle and contacted the RCMP to assist. RCMP officers seized 750 resealable bags of contraband cigarettes estimated to be valued at $17,600. The driver who is a 21 year old female resident of Kahnawake, Quebec was arrested and will appear at the Alexandria court on November 5th, 2008. The 1997 GM Sunfire estimated to be worth $2,000 was also seized. All the cigarettes seized are believed to have been manufactured in the United States and smuggled into Canada.
“This isn’t a problem that only impacts central Canada.” said Sgt. Michael Harvey of the RCMP. “The illicit product is reaching all corners of Canada and organized crime is using that money to fund additional criminal enterprise, such as drug trafficking.”

________________________________________
O.P.P. vehicle stop leads to RCMP seizure of 425.36 kilograms of fine cut tobacco
September 5, 2008
SOUTH GLENGARRY, ON, Sept. 5 /CNW/ – An Ontario Provincial Police Tobacco Stop on Highway 401 eastbound in South Glengarry, Ontario on September 5th, 2008 has resulted in the RCMP seizure of 425.36 kilograms of fine cut tobacco worth an estimated $38,284.
At 6:18 a.m., an officer from the O.P.P. stopped a 2000 Ford F 150 pick-up truck on Highway 401 eastbound in South Glengarry. When the officer approached the driver, the driver sped away and collided with a Transport truck that was also heading eastbound. The driver fled away on foot and the officer secured the scene to continue the investigation. The officer located garbage bags of fine cut tobacco inside the truck and contacted the Cornwall RCMP Detachment to assist. RCMP officer attended and seized 21 garbage bags that contained 425.36 kilograms of fine cut tobacco which is believed to have been produced in the United States and smuggled into Canada. The RCMP did not seize the pick-up truck as it was heavily damaged in the collision. The RCMP and O.P.P. are continuing the investigation and the driver has not been located.
“We continue to see a rise in dangerous driving by the people who are transporting the illicit tobacco on our roadways and the public is placed at risk,” said Sgt. Michael Harvey of the RCMP. “Public safety is our priority and we encourage the motoring public to be cautious on the roadways due the risky behaviour of organized crime groups involved in the illicit tobacco trade.”

________________________________________
RCMP/CBSA Seize Counterfeit Cigarettes Worth over 2.2 Million Dollars
September 3, 2008
TORONTO, Sept. 3 /CNW/ – On Saturday August 16th 2008, a joint forces operation involving the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) Greater Toronto Area Customs and Excise Section, Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) for the Greater Toronto Area and the British Columbia Waterfront Joint Forces Operation resulted in the seizure of 43,950 cartons of counterfeit Players and du Maurier cigarettes with an estimated total value of $2,241,450.00.
As a result of information provided by the CBSA to the RCMP, an investigation led officers to locate four men in possession of the illegal cigarettes in the Aurora, Ontario area. A second tobacco seizure occurred in Markham, Ontario. The cigarettes, which are believed to have originated in China, were shipped in a freight container to Canada. The RCMP further believes that the cigarettes were destined for the Toronto market.
Four men were arrested and charged with Unlawful Possession of Tobacco Products contrary to Section 32(1) of the Excise Act 2001. They are also facing charges under the Customs Act. The following individuals will appear in court on October 10th 2008;
Gou Ping WU (age 45) of Stouffville, Ontario Wai Sun YEUNG (age 44) of Markham, Ontario Yi HUANG (age 31) of Markham, Ontario, and, Kai Fa CHOI (age 40) of Markham, Ontario >>
These seizures represent just under 2.1 million dollars in duties and taxes lost by the Federal and Provincial governments. RCMP Staff Sergeant John Morton of the Toronto East Customs and Excise Section stated: “The distribution of contraband tobacco products in Canada has serious consequences for the Canadian taxpayers. It will result with loss of government revenue which will subsequently affect the delivery of some services including health care and educational programs. It also exposes the public to a higher health risk and makes it easier for young Canadians to obtain tobacco products through illicit markets.”

________________________________________
O.P.P. vehicle stop leads to RCMP seizure of 400,000 contraband cigarettes
August 29, 2008
SOUTH STORMONT, ON, Aug. 29 /CNW/ – A 27 year old male resident of Ottawa, Ontario faces charges under the Excise Act 2001 for possession of a tobacco product not properly stamped, after the vehicle he was driving was stopped by the Ontario Provincial Police on Highway 138 in South Stormont, Ontario.
On August 28th, 2008 at 11:38 p.m., an O.P.P. officer stopped a 2002 Dodge Caravan and while questioning the driver the officer observed cardboard boxes of cigarettes inside the van. Officers from the Cornwall RCMP Detachment were contacted to assist and the RCMP officers seized 2,000 resealable bags of contraband cigarettes representing 400,000 cigarettes worth an estimated value of $44,000. The cigarettes are believed to have been manufactured in the United States and smuggled into Canada. The 2002 Dodge Caravan worth an estimated $5,325 was also seized. The driver was also issued a Highway Traffic Act ticket by the O.P.P. officer for driving while under suspension. He will appear at the Cornwall court on September 29th, 2008.
“There are a variety of federal and provincial departments and agencies that have roles and responsibilities related to tobacco” said Sgt. Michael Harvey of the RCMP. “These organizations are responsible for health objectives, regulatory regimes, taxation, enforcement and Aboriginal and international relations. The combination of these responsibilities results in layers of regulations, taxation, and multi-jurisdictional enforcement. No single department or agency is solely responsible or can act alone.”

________________________________________
Contraband cigarette seizure huge -MB
Tuesday, August 26, 2008
By CARL CLUTCHEY
The alertness of a Marathon highway patrol officer has led to one of the largest seizures in memory of contraband cigarettes on this part of the Trans-Canada Highway.
After a passenger van was stopped Saturday on Highway 17 near White Lake Provincial Park for what investigators termed a routine traffic violation, police discovered several brown boxes that were found to contain a total of 910,000 unmarked cigarettes.
The size of the seizure “is pretty exceptional for Northern Ontario,” Marathon OPP acting Staff Sgt. Bryan MacKillop said Monday.
The odour of tobacco filled the detachment‘s corridor Monday.
Following the seizure, police charged a 40-year-old Sagkeeng First Nation man and a 58-year-old Winnipeg woman with possession of unmarked cigarettes. Sagkeeng is northeast of Winnipeg. The cigarettes are to be turned over to Ontario‘s Ministry of Revenue, whose enforcement branch will conduct an investigation into the incident under the Tobacco Tax Act.
Earlier this month, a 45-year-old Ottawa man was sentenced to six months in jail for possessing 100,000 unmarked cigarettes. His 48-year-old female co-accused was fined $75,000 in the same incident.
The April 2007 seizure of the contraband in that case was also made by Marathon OPP officers.
According to ministry figures, nearly 55 million unmarked cigarettes have been seized by investigators over the past two years.
On Aug. 19, police in Cornwall, Ont., seized 2.5 million unmarked cigarettes.

________________________________________
O.P.P. vehicle stops lead to RCMP seizure of 600,000 contraband cigarettes? -ON
August 25, 2008
??? NORTH STORMONT, ON, Aug. 25 /CNW/ – Three vehicles stopped by the Ontario Provincial Police in two days has lead to the RCMP seizure of 3,000 resealable bags of contraband cigarettes which represents 600,000 cigarettes estimated to be worth $66,000. It is believed that the cigarettes were manufactured in the United States and smuggled into Canada.
On August 20th, 2008 at 8:40 p.m., O.P.P. officers stopped a 2004 Pontiac Grand Prix and a 2001 Chevrolet Impala on Highway 401 eastbound in South Glengarry, Ontario. Officers located contraband cigarettes in the trunks of both vehicles and contacted the Cornwall RCMP to assist. RCMP officers seized 1,000 resealable bags of cigarettes from the two vehicles and questioned the female drivers ages 20 and 26, both residents of Akwesasne, Ontario. The 2004 Pontiac Grand Prix estimated to be worth $11,500 and the 2001 Chevrolet Impala estimated to be worth $5,375 were also seized, the investigation continues.
On August 21st, 2008, at 10:48 p.m., an O.P.P. officer was following a 1997 Dodge Caravan on County Road 12 northbound near Finch, Ontario when an SUV appeared to be attempting to block the officer’s vehicle by slowing him down while the Dodge Caravan sped away. When the officer caught up and stopped the Dodge Caravan in Crysler, Ontario, the driver had fled on foot. The officer found the van to contain contraband cigarettes and the Cornwall RCMP were called to assist. RCMP officers seized 2,000 resealable bags of contraband cigarettes as well as the van estimated to be valued at $3,000. This investigation also continues.
“In the Cornwall-Akwesasne corridor, the RCMP has formed a partnership with the Akwesasne Mohawk Police Service, Cornwall Community Police Service, Canada Border Services Agency, Ontario Provincial Police, United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement, United States Border Patrol and the United States Coast Guard to combat smuggling,” said Sgt. Michael Harvey of the RCMP. “Coordinated actions by these partners have resulted in a number of significant illegal tobacco seizures.”

________________________________________
Joint RCMP and CBSA investigation leads to RCMP seizure of 300,000 contraband cigarettes
August 19, 2008
CORNWALL, ON, Aug. 19 /CNW/ – A 40 year old and a 38 year old female residents of Cornwall, Ontario are facing charges under the Excise Act 2001 for possession of a tobacco product not properly stamped, after a joint investigation by the Canada Border Services Agency and the RCMP. On August 17th, 2008 at 7:50 p.m., an RCMP officer stopped a 2000 Ford F-150 pick-up truck on Marleau Avenue in Cornwall, Ontario and observed cardboard boxes of contraband cigarettes inside the pick-up truck. RCMP officers seized 1,250 resealable bags of contraband cigarettes as well as 250 resealable bags of Discount brand cigarettes. This represents 300,000 cigarettes estimated to be worth $33,000. It is believed that the cigarettes were manufactured in the United States and smuggled into Canada. The 2000 Ford F150 pickup truck worth an estimated $7,675 was also seized. The driver and passenger were released and will both appear at the Cornwall court on September 22nd, 2008.
“All tobacco products must be sold by a licensed retailer” said Sgt. Michael Harvey of the RCMP. “Like anything else, if it seems too good to be true, it likely is and people are encouraged to avoid these situations.”

________________________________________
O.P.P. vehicle stop leads to RCMP seizure of 190,000 cigarettes
August 15, 2008
SOUTH GLENGARRY, ON, Aug. 15 /CNW/ – A 34 year old Cornwall, Ontario man is facing charges under the Excise Act 2001 for possession of a tobacco product not properly stamped following a vehicle stop on Highway 401 eastbound in South Glengarry, Ontario.
On August 14th, 2008, at 8:30 a.m., an officer from the Ontario Provincial Police stopped a 2002 Pontiac Grand AM and during the interaction with the driver the officer observed resealable bags of contraband cigarettes inside the vehicle. Officers from the RCMP assisted and seized 950 resealable bags of contraband cigarettes representing 190,000 cigarettes worth an estimated value of $20,900. The cigarettes are believed to have been manufactured in the United States and smuggled into Canada. The vehicle, worth an estimated $7,000, was also seized. The driver is scheduled to appear at the Alexandria court on October 8th, 2008, and faces an additional charge from the O.P.P. for failing to produce valid insurance.
“If tobacco is in a bag such as a resealable bag, it is illegal to purchase” said Sgt. Michael Harvey of the RCMP. “All cigarettes must be purchased in a package with official health warnings, proper stamping and all applicable taxes paid.”

________________________________________
Busts net illegal cigs -MB
August 15, 2008
By CHRIS KITCHING, SUN MEDIA
Two face charges after close to 25,000 smokes found
Two Winnipeggers’ stockpile of black market cigarettes went up in smoke during separate busts in the North End by Winnipeg police and provincial investigators this week.
Authorities seized 122 plastic baggies, each containing 200 illegal smokes, which sell for $25 to $30 per bag on the street, said police spokeswoman Const. Natalie Aitken.
Individual smokes sell for 50 cents apiece. Police said there is no evidence the suspects were selling the smokes.
The cigarettes have no corporate markings or approved health warnings, and don’t bring in tax revenue for the province. They’re sold for considerably less than retail value.
It’s believed the cigarettes were made somewhere in Eastern Canada, said Garry Hiebert of Manitoba Finance’s special investigations unit.
In past seizures, illegal smokes have come to Manitoba through reserves straddling the boundaries of Ontario, Quebec and the U.S.
Police said two people are facing possession charges under the Tax Administration and Miscellaneous Taxes Act.
Police would not say if there is a link between the suspects.
Division 13 community support officers and Manitoba Finance investigators conducted the raids Tuesday afternoon. At a suite in the 1000 block of Main Street, officers seized 31 cartons, which have a retail value of $2,790 and street value of $930. Police arrested a 70-year-old man.
A few hours later, police arrested a 54-year-old woman and seized 91 cartons at a suite in the 200 block of Stella Walk. Those cigarettes have a retail value of $8,190 and a street value of $2,730.
Both suspects were released on a promise to appear in court. Police didn’t identify them.
Manitoba Finance investigators have teamed with Winnipeg police and RCMP in several busts this year.
The largest happened in January when RCMP arrested 12 people who were allegedly part of a distribution ring. Police seized 1.5 million cigarettes and more than $50,000 in cash.
RCMP say a record 618,077 cartons of illegal smokes were seized in Canada last year, five times the amount seized in 2004.

________________________________________
Akwesasne Mohawk Police Service traffic stop leads to RCMP seizure of 300,000 cigarettes
August 15, 2008
CORNWALL, ON, Aug. 15 /CNW/ – A 22 year old Cornwall, Ontario man is facing charges under the Excise Act 2001 for possession of a tobacco product not properly stamped following a vehicle stop in a commercial parking lot on Brookdale Avenue in Cornwall, Ontario.
On August 14th, 2008, at 11:08 a.m., an officer from the Akwesasne Mohawk Police Service observed a 2003 Chevrolet pick-up truck failing to stop at a stop sign on Island Road in Akwesasne, Ontario. When the officer stopped the truck he found the truck to contain cardboard boxes of cigarettes. Members of the Cornwall RCMP Detachment assisted and seized 1,500 re-sealable bags of cigarettes which represents 300,000 cigarettes estimated to be valued at $33,000. The cigarettes are believed to have been manufactured in the United States. The truck, worth an estimated $8,900, was also seized. The driver is scheduled to appear at the Cornwall court on September 22nd, 2008, and faces an additional charge from the Akwesasne Mohawk Police Service for disobeying a stop sign.
“Many drivers in our communities are continuing to bring attention to themselves when they disobey the traffic laws,” said Sgt. Michael Harvey of the RCMP. “The motoring public need to watch out as these drivers’s put others at risk.”

________________________________________
O.P.P. locate abandoned vehicle which leads to RCMP seizure of 188,400 cigarettes
August 14, 2008
CORNWALL, ON, Aug. 14 /CNW/ – An officer from the Ontario Provincial Police located an abandoned vehicle in the median off Highway 401 in Cornwall, Ontario that contained 188,400 contraband cigarettes after a witness contacted the Ontario Provincial Police advising that the vehicle was speeding and lost control. On August 8th, 2008 at 10:27 p.m., a witness observed a 1998 Pontiac Grand AM driving at approximately 150 kilometres per hour eastbound on Highway 401 in Cornwall, Ontario. The witness observed the vehicle using the shoulder of the highway to pass other vehicles and then observed the vehicle lose control ending up in the median. The driver was then observed to get out of the vehicle and flee the scene on foot toward the city of Cornwall. The Ontario Provincial Police located the vehicle and with assistance of the K-9 Unit were unable to locate the driver. Officers from the Cornwall RCMP Detachment were contacted to assist and the RCMP officers seized 942 re-sealable bags of contraband cigarettes worth an estimated $20,724. It is believed that the cigarettes were manufactured in the United States and smuggled into Canada. The 1998 Pontiac Grand AM worth an estimated $3,475 was also seized. The investigation continues.
“Public Safety and security is our fundamental priority” said Sgt. Michael Harvey of the RCMP. “The illicit/contraband tobacco market is without a doubt lucrative, especially to heads of criminal organizations involved, who sometimes use their profits to fund additional illegal activity such as drug trafficking and firearms smuggling.”
http://www.newswire.ca/en/releases/archive/August2008/14/c4237.html
________________________________________
Akwesasne Mohawk Police Service traffic stops lead to RCMP seizure of 700,000 cigarettes
August 13, 2008
CORNWALL, ON, Aug. 13 /CNW/ – Officers from the Akwesasne Mohawk Police Service stopped three vehicles in two days which lead to the Cornwall RCMP Detachment seizure of 3,500 re-sealable bags of cigarettes which represent 700,000 cigarettes estimated to be valued at $77,000.
On August 10th, 2008, at 3:36 p.m., an officer from the Akwesasne Mohawk Police Service stopped a 1998 Mercury Mystic on Pitt Street in Cornwall, Ontario after the officer observed the vehicle to be speeding on the Seaway International Bridge toward Cornwall. An officer from the Cornwall RCMP Detachment was contacted to assist and the RCMP officer seized 500 re-sealable bags of cigarettes located inside the vehicle. The 1998 Mercury Mystic worth an estimated $3,475 was also seized. The 19 year old male driver, a resident
of Lunenburg, Ontario, faces charges under the Excise Act 2001 for possession of a tobacco product not properly stamped. He was released and will appear at the Cornwall court on September 29th, 2008. The driver was also issued Highway Traffic Act tickets from the Akwesasne Mohawk Police Service for speeding, driver failing to surrender a driver’s licence, driver failing to surrender a permit for a motor vehicle, and driver failing to surrender an insurance card.
Later the same date at 5:00 p.m., an officer from the Akwesasne Mohawk Police Service stopped a 1998 Pontiac Montana van at a parking lot on Brookdale Avenue in Cornwall, Ontario after the officer observed the vehicle failed to have rear brake lights. When the officer approached the driver he observed cardboard boxes of cigarettes behind the passenger seat. An officer from the Cornwall RCMP Detachment was contacted to assist and the RCMP officer seized 500 re-sealable bags of cigarettes. The 1998 Pontiac Montana van worth an estimated $3,000 was also seized. The 39 year old male driver, a resident of Cornwall, Ontario, faces charges under the Excise Act 2001 for possession of a tobacco product not properly stamped. He was released and will appear at the Cornwall court on September 29th, 2008. The driver was also issued Highway Traffic Act tickets by the Akwesasne Mohawk Police Service for driving while under suspension and failing to have brake lights.
Finally on August 11th, 2008, at 11:40 p.m., an officer from the Akwesasne Mohawk Police Service observed a 2001 GMC Yukon failing to signal a turn on Island Road in Akwesasne, Ontario and when the officer went to stop the Yukon he was slowed down by the driver of a Chevrolet Cavalier. The officer then observed the driver of the Yukon turn into the Peace Tree Mall and park the Yukon beside a bushy area and the driver fled on foot. An officer from the Cornwall RCMP Detachment was called to assist and the RCMP seized 2,500 re-sealable bags of cigarettes that were located inside the Yukon. The 2001 GMC Yukon worth an estimated $8,575 was also seized. The driver was not located and the investigation continues. It is believed that all of the cigarettes seized were manufactured in the United States.
“There continues to be a disregard for motor vehicle safety and safe driving by some drivers which can become a hazard to the motoring public in
our communities” said Sgt. Michael Harvey of the RCMP. “The RCMP continues to assist the Akwesasne Mohawk Police Service to ensure that our communities
remain safe.”
http://www.newswire.ca/en/releases/archive/August2008/13/c3802.html
________________________________________
Akwesasne Mohawk Police Service traffic stop leads to RCMP seizure of 260,000 cigarettes
August 12, 2008
AKWESASNE, ON, Aug. 12 /CNW/ – On August 8th, 2008, at 8:36 a.m., an officer from the Akwesasne Mohawk Police Service followed a 2002 Pontiac Montana on Island Road in Akwesasne, Ontario. When the driver observed the officer, he accelerated and failed to stop at a stop sign. The officer activated his emergency equipment and followed the van until the driver stopped at a residence located on James Lane and fled on foot. The officer approached the van and observed it to contain cardboard boxes of cigarettes. Officers from the Cornwall RCMP Detachment were contacted to assist. The RCMP officers seized 1,300 re-sealable bags of cigarettes which represents 260,000cigarettes estimated to be valued at $28,600. It is believed that the cigarettes were manufactured in the United States. The 2002 Pontiac Montana worth an estimated $5,225 was also seized. The driver was not located and the investigation is on going.
“We are concerned for the safety of the citizens in our community when it comes to those who do not obey the rules of the road and place other drivers at risk on our roadways”, said Sgt. Michael Harvey of the RCMP.
http://www.newswire.ca/en/releases/archive/August2008/12/c3582.html
________________________________________

Spike belt deployed to stop contraband tobacco distribution
August 8, 2008
CORNWALL, ON, Aug. 8 /CNW/ – On August 5th 2008, at approximately 10:30 pm, OPP officers from the Long Sault Detachment attempted to stop a vehicle under the Highway Traffic Act on Highway 401 traveling east near Summerstown Road. When the marked police vehicle activated it’s emergency equipment, the vehicle refused to stop.
The suspect vehicle performed a U-turn in order to flee from the police. Subsequent to a short chase where excessive speeds were reached, the OPP deployed a spike belt on McConnell Road as the suspect vehicle passed. The vehicle was then immobilized without incident and two female Akwesasne residents aged 18 and 19 years were arrested for failing to stop. A subsequent search of the vehicle, a 2000 Chrysler Cirrus, resulted in the seizure of 1100 resealable ziplock bags containing cigarettes.
The RCMP were contacted and seized the cigarettes which are believed to have been manufactured in the United States. The investigation for Possession of unstamped tobacco under the Excise Act 2001 as well as several Highway Traffic Act offences are presently ongoing. The total value of this seizure is $27,200.00.
Public safety is again being placed at risk when drivers transporting illegal commodities avoid police enforcement measures. The law enforcement agencies will continue to work together to ensure that our communities are safe.
http://www.newswire.ca/en/releases/archive/August2008/08/c2810.html
________________________________________
RCMP/CBSA investigation leads to conspiracy charges
August 1, 2008
SOUTH GLENGARRY, ON, Aug. 1 /CNW/ – On July 30th 2008, a 59 year old male resident of Denbigh, Ontario, a 23 year old female from Scarborough, Ontario as well as a 23 year old male from Kanawake, Quebec were charged with a variety of criminal offences related to the Excise Act 2001.
The investigation began when a Canada Border Service Agency (CBSA) officer identified a vehicle in the Cornwall, Ontario area that was previously known to be involved in contraband smuggling. The RCMP were contacted, and investigation led to a property in Ingleside Ontario. Upon arrival at the property, the officers located the driver and the suspect vehicle which was loaded with 500 re-sealable baggies of tobacco which were not properly stamped in accordance to the Excise Act 2001.
As a result of this investigation, officers arrested two additional individuals at the scene along with $17,840.00 and a truck. The total value of this seizure is $33,340.00.
All three individuals were charged with Conspiracy to posses tobacco not properly stamped contrary to the Criminal Code. The Kanawake driver of the vehicle was also charged with Possession of tobacco not properly stamped in accordance to the Excise Act 2001. He was release and is scheduled to appear at the Cornwall Provincial Court in September 2008. The Scarborough and Denbigh residents were charged with possession of property obtained by crime and were held in custody. Both will be appearing at the Cornwall Provincial Court.
Organized crime is often involved in the illegal tobacco trade and as a result, public safety is undermined. Investigations have linked contraband tobacco distribution networks to drug and arms trafficking and money laundering.
http://www.newswire.ca/en/releases/archive/August2008/01/c9243.html
________________________________________
Akwesasne Mohawk Police Service, Cornwall RCMP, and CBSA continue enforcement operations on contraband tobacco distribution
August 1, 2008
CORNWALL, ON, Aug. 1 /CNW/ – Four (4) investigations pursuant to the Excise Act 2001, have been conducted by law enforcement partners in the Cornwall, Ontario area over the past week. These investigations have resulted in the seizure of 750,000 illegal cigarettes, 402 kg of fine cut tobacco and four vehicles with the value of the seizures estimated at $134,150.00.
Charged for possession of a tobacco product not properly stamped according to the Excise Act 2001, are two men from Martintown aged 44 and 18 years old, a 44 year old Cornwall woman, a 29 year old Ottawa man and a 21 year old Kanawake woman, who will appear in Cornwall Provincial Court.
These investigations were conducted in relation to vehicles departing Cornwall Island and it is believed that the cigarettes were manufactured in the United States and smuggled into Canada. The Akwesasne Mohawk Police Service continue their efforts with their policing partners to reduce crime within their territory.
Law enforcement agencies continue to share resources and work collaboratively to ensure our communities remain safe from suspicious
activities. Public safety remains our highest priority.
http://www.newswire.ca/en/releases/archive/August2008/01/c9218.html


Police seize van full of contraband smokes near Oxford -NS
Feb 6, 2008
By The Canadian Press
OXFORD — Police have seized 288,000 illegal cigarettes after the driver of a van fell asleep at the wheel and crashed near Oxford.
A 43-year-old man from North River faces charges under the Excise Act, Revenue Act and Motor Vehicle Act.
Police say he was returning from Quebec with 27 cases of contraband cigarettes when he went off the Trans-Canada Highway into the median early Sunday morning.
The man, whose name has not been released, was later released and will appear in court at a later date.
RCMP say the amount of illegal tobacco they seize across the province is only a small percentage of what comes in.
Late last month 11 people were arrested and 50,000 illegal cigarettes were seized as the result of an investigation in the Amherst area.

Police seize illegal tobacco in Bridgewater bust -NS
February 5, 2008
CBC News
Police have seized 65,000 illegal cigarettes during a drug raid in Nova Scotia’s south shore.

Illegal cig-ring bust -MB
Tue, January 15, 2008
By CHRIS KITCHING, SUN MEDIA
Ex-Gladstone councillor arrested
RCMP have arrested 12 people, including a former Gladstone town councillor, who were allegedly part of a distribution ring that sold illegal cigarettes in Manitoba.
During a 14-month investigation called Project Deliverance, authorities seized 1.5 million cigarettes and more than $50,000 in cash along with eight vehicles and a horse trailer the suspects used to transport the smokes from Ontario and Quebec, police said.
This is the latest bust in what has become a growing market in Manitoba in recent months.
“The availability of contraband cigarettes is definitely on the rise,” said RCMP spokeswoman Sgt. Line Karpish.
The arrests and seizures were made over a two-month period. Police found 77 cases of cigarettes at a home in Clandeboye, a small town in Manitoba’s Interlake. They also searched a home in Winnipeg.
Karpish said the cigarettes were sold by the case. Each case contained 50 resealable plastic bags. Each bag contained 200 cigarettes.
Bags have been known to retail for $10 apiece.
The cigarettes would have resulted in a loss of $427,500 in tax revenue to the federal and provincial governments, RCMP said.
Karpish would not say where the cigarettes were sold.
Sales of contraband cigarettes have been linked to organized crime groups and drug trafficking in Canada, Karpish said.
In this case, the group was organized but there is no direct link to organized crime, Karpish said.
She was not aware if any of the suspects are members of or affiliated with any gangs.
Karpish said she does not know how long the group had been operating.
The possession and sale of cigarettes that have not been stamped is a federal offence under the Excise Act and the provincial Tobacco Tax Act.
Dawson also is charged with drug-related offences in connection with a small marijuana grow operation that was found during a raid at a Winnipeg home.
McKinley was a councillor in Gladstone, 150 km northwest of Winnipeg, for at least one term. He lost his bid for re-election in October 2002 when he received the fewest votes of all candidates.
If convicted, the suspects can face large fines or jail time.
The RCMP customs and excise section conducted the investigation and had help from RCMP detachments and Manitoba Finance’s special investigations unit.
Anyone with information about contraband tobacco is asked to call RCMP at 983-5423 or CrimeStoppers at 1-800-222-8477.
12 MANITOBANS CHARGED
RCMP have charged the following people under the Excise Act:
– Paulo Jeorge Cabral, 40, of Winnipeg, Glen (Tim) Cooney, 47, of Clandeboye, Paul Alan Dawson, 36, of Winnipeg, Jose Antonio Figueirido, 57, of Winnipeg, Sylvain Gagnon, 40, of St. Jerome, Que., Shane Jonathan Hebert, 34, of Selkirk, David Errol McKinley, 59, of Gladstone, Vitor Dasilva Mira, 36, of Winnipeg, Jose Joaquin Periera, 49, of Winnipeg , Marco Tavares, 33, of Winnipeg, Gary Wishnowski, 47, of Oakbank, Randy Kenneth Wishnowski, 45, of Clandeboye

Traffic stops net contraband smokes -ON
Fri, January 11, 2008
By LAURA CZEKAJ, Sun Media
Two traffic stops have netted cops along the seaway thousands of contraband cigarettes and resulted in two arrests.
A 24-year-old Cornwall man has been charged after police found 480,000 contraband cigarettes in the vehicle he was driving.
Akwesasne Mohawk police stopped a Chevrolet Suburban on Seventh St. in Cornwall just after midnight on Wednesday and found the cigarettes.
Central St. Lawrence Valley RCMP officers were called to the scene and seized 1,750 re-sealable bags of contraband cigarettes, 300 cartons of DK brand cigarettes and 350 cartons of Putter’s Light brand cigarettes that were all manufactured in the U.S. The illegal haul is worth about $52,800, according to police.
Elsewhere, a routine vehicle stop resulted in provincial police seizing about 53 cases of contraband cigarettes. An officer pulled over a vehicle at about 8 p.m. Thursday night on Hwy. 401 in South Glengarry and made the discovery.
A 24-year-old woman from Cornwall is charged with possessing unmarked cigarettes, using a license plate not in accordance to the Highway Traffic Act, failing to surrender permit for motor vehicle and failing to have an insurance card.
The woman will appear in an Alexandria court in April.

2 days, 2 vans, a lot of illegal tobacco -NS
Last Updated: Thursday, January 10, 2008 | 1:04 PM AT
CBC News
RCMP seize contraband tobacco over two days near Truro
RCMP in Nova Scotia say tobacco smuggling appears to be on the rise in the region.

Police in N.B. seize $10,000 in cigarettes, arrest P.E.I. man -NB, PEI
Last Updated: Friday, January 4, 2008 | 10:52 AM AT
CBC News
A traffic accident in southern New Brunswick on New Year’s Day has led to an RCMP seizure of more than 100,000 contraband cigarettes.

Raid nets drugs, guns, illegal smokes
Sun. Dec 30 – 5:32 AM
A man and a woman face more than two dozen charges after police seized drugs and tobacco from a home in Queensland on Friday night.
Police using a search warrant seized marijuana, ecstasy, cocaine, marijuana plants and cash, as well as firearms, ammunition and 14 cases of contraband cigarettes.
The suspects, both 22, are charged with 26 offences under the Criminal Code, the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act and the Revenue and Excise Act.
Both will remain in police custody until a court appearance Monday.
No names were released.

Cross-border smugglers arrested in police sting
Published: Thursday, December 13, 2007
The Ottawa Citizen
The RCMP have arrested a dozen people in connection with a cross-border cigarette smuggling and drug trafficking ring based out of the Cornwall area. The 12 suspects face a total of 115 charges. An underground cigarette manufacturing plant was also dismantled. The police investigation lasted more than two years. About 30 officers from the RCMP, the Cornwall Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit and area police forces were involved in the investigation, conducted as part of Project Crawler. Arrests were made in Ontario, Quebec, as well as the Akwesasne Territory.

Smuggling pipeline shut, cops say
Published: Wednesday, December 12
PAUL CHERRY, The Gazette
More than 7,400 kg of tobacco seized. Network said to run from U.S. to Kahnawake
More than 7,400 kilograms of contraband tobacco has been seized in a joint investigation that police say has shut down a vast smuggling pipeline extending from the southern United States to the Kahnawake Mohawk reserve.
Seven people were arrested and another was expected to turn himself in yesterday to investigators with Project Access, a task force that investigates Quebec’s underground economy. It includes investigators from the RCMP and the S?ret? du Qu?bec’s organized crime division.
The eight people targeted in the operation face charges of conspiracy and violating the federal Excise Act and the provincial Tobacco Tax Act. One of the eight, William John Meloche, 57, of Kahnawake, was charged last month with violating two counts of the Excise Act.
The investigation targeted a group that operated in Pointe Leblanc, west of Valleyfield. Seven vehicles that were used to transport the tobacco to Kahnawake were seized yesterday while police executed search warrants.
Police seized enough tobacco since July to produce more than 7 million cigarettes.
“With its proximity to the United States, the Ontario and Quebec borders and Akwesasne, they took advantage of the geography of the region,” said Sgt. Michael Harvey, of the RCMP’s detachment for the Central St. Lawrence Valley.
“We took out the whole network. There are not many people who live in the area year-round. They took advantage of that. No one took notice of what they were doing.”
The group smuggled tobacco grown by licensed producers in North Carolina and South Carolina into Canada. The tobacco was sold to illegal manufacturers on the U.S. side of the Akwesasne reserve, Harvey said. The tobacco was cut and then smuggled by boat along the St. Lawrence Seaway to small towns in the Mont?r?gie. From there it was delivered to Kahnawake.
“There it would be used to produce illegal cigarettes that would be sold across Canada,” Harvey said.
pcherry@thegazette.canwest.com


$122,000 fine for contraband tobacco
Dec 1, 2007
Kahnawake resident Tatum Ashley Diabo was found guilty of possession of contraband tobacco last Oct. 9 at the Valleyfield courthouse.
Judge Marie-Chantal Doucet sentenced her to fines totalling $122,000.
Diabo had been intercepted by Suret? du Qu?bec officers on Feb. 7, 2006 Police seized from the van she was driving a total of 991 cartons, each containing 200 illegal cigarettes, according to a Revenu Quebec communiqu? released on Nov. 23.
The arrest happened following a joint surveillance operation carried out by the SQ and RCMP.
The merchandise, worth about $20,000 on the black market and representing even more in lost taxes, will be destroyed, the SQ said.(Tr: D.R.)

Smuggling pipeline shut, cops sayPublished: Wednesday, December 12PAUL CHERRY, The GazetteMore than 7,400 kg of tobacco seized. Network said to run from U.S. to KahnawakeMore than 7,400 kilograms of contraband tobacco has been seized in a joint investigation that police say has shut down a vast smuggling pipeline extending from the southern United States to the Kahnawake Mohawk reserve.Seven people were arrested and another was expected to turn himself in yesterday to investigators with Project Access, a task force that investigates Quebec’s underground economy. It includes investigators from the RCMP and the S?ret? du Qu?bec’s organized crime division.The eight people targeted in the operation face charges of conspiracy and violating the federal Excise Act and the provincial Tobacco Tax Act. One of the eight, William John Meloche, 57, of Kahnawake, was charged last month with violating two counts of the Excise Act.The investigation targeted a group that operated in Pointe Leblanc, west of Valleyfield. Seven vehicles that were used to transport the tobacco to Kahnawake were seized yesterday while police executed search warrants.Police seized enough tobacco since July to produce more than 7 million cigarettes.”With its proximity to the United States, the Ontario and Quebec borders and Akwesasne, they took advantage of the geography of the region,” said Sgt. Michael Harvey, of the RCMP’s detachment for the Central St. Lawrence Valley.”We took out the whole network. There are not many people who live in the area year-round. They took advantage of that. No one took notice of what they were doing.”The group smuggled tobacco grown by licensed producers in North Carolina and South Carolina into Canada. The tobacco was sold to illegal manufacturers on the U.S. side of the Akwesasne reserve, Harvey said. The tobacco was cut and then smuggled by boat along the St. Lawrence Seaway to small towns in the Mont?r?gie. From there it was delivered to Kahnawake.”There it would be used to produce illegal cigarettes that would be sold across Canada,” Harvey said. $122,000 fine for contraband tobaccoDec 1, 2007Kahnawake resident Tatum Ashley Diabo was found guilty of possession of contraband tobacco last Oct. 9 at the Valleyfield courthouse. Judge Marie-Chantal Doucet sentenced her to fines totalling $122,000. Diabo had been intercepted by Suret? du Qu?bec officers on Feb. 7, 2006 Police seized from the van she was driving a total of 991 cartons, each containing 200 illegal cigarettes, according to a Revenu Quebec communiqu? released on Nov. 23.The arrest happened following a joint surveillance operation carried out by the SQ and RCMP. The merchandise, worth about $20,000 on the black market and representing even more in lost taxes, will be destroyed, the SQ said.(Tr: D.R.)

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.


*