Police bring in dozens of smugglers, millions of smokes
The RCMP and SQ claim that they have halved cigarette smuggling in the region south of Montreal since 2010.
Published Wednesday, July 4, 2012 10:29AM EDT
Last Updated Wednesday, July 4, 2012 1:46PM EDT
MONTREAL -Smoke 'em if you got 'em, advises the old saying, and police now have a whole lot of cancer sticks, but the only lighting up has been done by flashing police sirens of a combined task force that has confiscated the millions of smuggled smokes.
A total of 49 suspects and 12 million smuggled cigarettes have been hauled in thus far in 2012, according to a special federal and provincial police task force, which made the announcement Wednesday.
The arrests and seizures were concentrated near Valleyfield and the Central St. Lawrence Valley region and also included seizures of 4,230 kilograms of fine cut tobacco, 350,000 cigars and 38 vehicles, worth an estimated $2.3 million.
The busts have targeted the shores of Lake Saint-François and in the vicinity of the towns of St-Agnès-de-Dundee, St-Anicet, Ste-Barbe, St-Zotique and Rivière-Beaudette.
The alleged smugglers could face charges under the Excise Act, 2001, the Québec Tobacco Tax Act and the Criminal Code.