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Holy smokes!

Published:Monday | January 25, 2010 | 12:00 AM

The Jamaica Customs Department last week supervised the destruction of two million sticks of cigarettes with a street value of more than $40 million

This was the latest in a series of efforts by Customs to prohibit the illegal flow of cigarettes into the Jamaican market.

The department served warning that it would be stepping up its vigilance in the coming weeks.

In a press release yesterday, Customs said the illicit cigarettes enter the island without the required taxes, such as customs duty and the Special Consumption Tax, being paid.

The trading of illicit cigarettes is an illegal act, contravening the provisions of the Trade Marks Act and Copyright Act (in cases where the illicit cigarettes are a counterfeit of a legitimate brand) and denies the Ministry of Finance of taxes as well as the National Health Fund of revenues.