Cigarette Smuggling In Virginia | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

: News

Filed Under:

Cigarette Smuggling In Virginia

Play associated audio

By Kate Sheehy

Undercover agents from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms in Virgina have filtered millions of cigarettes onto the nation's street to target smugglers.

ATF agents in Virginia say the cigarettes were released as part of sting operations that have yielded about five dozen arrests over the past three years for illegal cigarette sales on the black market.

The eastern district of Virginia including Richmond, northern Virginia and the Interstate 95 corridor is a hotbed for the crime. This is because while most states, and the district, have passed multiple tax hikes. Virginia, as part of the heart of tobacco country, only taxes pennies per pack.

The U.S. Department of Justice estimates that federal, state and local governments lose out on $5 billion a year in tax revenue from illegally sold cigarettes.

Cigarette smuggling rings sometimes provide funding for terrorists, but are more often connected to organized crime. For this reason, Virginia agents say investigations into smuggling often turn up other crimes.

WAMU 88.5

Art Beat With Lauren Landau, July 1, 2015

You can check out work by local women artists or see a comedy about how one woman’s midlife crisis affects those around her.

WAMU 88.5

Food Packaging & Pricing

Have you ever popped open a bag of potato chips only to be disappointed by the number of crisps in your bag? It's not just you. To avoid raising prices, companies often increase their "nonfunctional slack fill" or the difference between the volume of product and its container. We talk about how food packaging affects your recipe and wallet.

WAMU 88.5

Environmental Outlook: The Growing Fossil Fuel Divestment Movement

A look at the growing fossil fuel divestment movement.

NPR

USA's 'Mr. Robot,' HBO's 'Ballers' Among Picks For Best Summer TV Series

A flood of some 120 series, both new and returning, are coming to TV sets this summer. So, how to choose which ones to binge-watch by the pool? Our TV critic picks his four favorite new shows.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.