Tobacco Distributers Halted

BOWMANVILLE, ON, Oct. 23 /CNW/ - On Monday, October 19th, 2009, a joint investigation was conducted by Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) and the RCMP Greater Toronto Area Customs and Excise Section, Bowmanville Site which resulted in the seizure of approximately 200 kilograms of contraband tobacco and the arrest of three Toronto area residence.

On the 16th of October, CBSA intercepted a parcel at the Peace Bridge commercial operations which resulted in the seizure of approximately 100 kilograms of unstamped tobacco. The RCMP was contacted and the subsequent joint investigation resulted in the execution of a search warrant at a residence in Richmond Hill, Ontario and further seizure of approximately 100 kilograms of unstamped tobacco products. These tobacco products were of various East Indian and Pakistani brands. Three individuals were arrested and are facing charges under the Excise Act 2001.

    Charged for possession of unstamped tobacco are:
    HABIB HAJI, Aqeel (Age: 31), Richmond Hill, Ontario
    PATEL, Shafik (Age: 41), Toronto, Ontario
    PATEL, Asmaben (Age: 36), Toronto, Ontario

Although the effects of illegal tobacco activities are not obvious, all Canadians are impacted by activities such as these through the loss of government revenues and by undermining of Public Health efforts to decrease tobacco use.

The RCMP is committed to working with its partners and stakeholders to ensure that every effort is made to enhance public safety and economic integrity across Canada.

All accused are scheduled to appear in court on January 12th , 2010 in Newmarket, Ontario.

The public is reminded that they can provide information relating to any criminal activity by contacting the Provincial Crime Stoppers agency confidential tip line at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477).

SOURCE Royal Canadian Mounted Police

For further information: For further information: Cpl. Erich HEINS, Toronto East RCMP Detachment, Customs and Excise Unit, (905) 697-6000 ext 282 - office, (905) 439-0806 - mobile; Jean D'Amelio Swyer, Communications Canada Border Services Agency, Office: (905) 354-2011, Cell: (905) 933-5463

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