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During the Holidays, Cigarette Smugglers Will Be Very Active along the East Coast

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(OPEN):
OVER THE THANKSGIVING-WEEKEND, THIS YEAR'S STATE-TAX LOSSES RESULTING FROM TOBACCO-SMUGGLING WILL HIT FIVE-BILLION DOLLARS.  THAT'S ACCORDING TO RICHARD MARIANOS--A RETIRED "A-T-F"-AGENT WHO NOW SPEAKS OUT ABOUT THE ISSUE, AT "THE-NEW-TOBACCO-ROAD"-DOT-COM...

(MARIANOS):
"
CIGARETTE-SMUGGLING IS NO LONGER A MOM-AND-POP OPERATION; INSTEAD, IT'S GROWING INTO A SOPHISTICATED CRIMINAL-INDUSTRY.  IN FACT, CIGARETTES ARE THE NEW CURRENCY OF ORGANIZED-CRIME--WITH PROFITS GREATER THAN THOSE FROM OTHER ILLICIT-ACTIVITY.  DURING THE HOLIDAYS, IF YOU PASS A TRACTOR-TRAILER OR A BOX-TRUCK ON THE HIGHWAYS--ESPECIALLY 'I-95'--THERE'S A REAL CHANCE THAT ITS CARGO IS CONTRABAND CIGARETTES.  THE FIRST STEP TO ADDRESS THIS PROBLEM IS TO MAKE TOBACCO-TRAFFICKING MORE PAINFUL THAN A PARKING-TICKET:  VIRGINIA AND RHODE ISLAND HAVE ALREADY PASSED LAWS TO MAKE CIGARETTE-SMUGGLING A FELONY--AND ARE PROVIDING MORE RESOURCES FOR LAW-ENFORCEMENT.  OTHER STATES ALONG THE EAST COAST ARE ALSO LOOKING AT NEW LAWS AND PENALTIES.  IF, HOWEVER, WE IGNORE IT, WE INVITE A NEW CRIMINAL-CULTURE TO TAKE ROOT."

(CLOSE):
FOR MORE INFORMATION, VISIT "THE-NEW-TOBACCO-ROAD"-DOT-COM.



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