Two Tobacco Smugglers Face Steep Fines

Two men have been slapped with heavy fines after being found guilty of trafficking non-Manitoba marked cigarettes.

Rene Bigras of St. Constant, Quebec and Carl Richard Fontaine of Sagkeeng First Nation received their penalties on June 21.

Manitoba Finance says Bigras was stopped by RCMP in May 2009 and found to be in possession of 1.75 million unmarked cigarettes. Bigras was arrested again in March 2010 for possession of 600,000 unmarked cigarettes. He was fined $130,000 and assessed provincial and federal tax penalties totalling more than $1.75 million.

Fontaine was stopped by RCMP and found to be transporting 200,000 unmarked cigarettes. He was handed a six-month jail sentence for each of the federal and provincial charges, to be served concurrently. He was also assessed a $105,000 tax penalty under the provincial legislation.


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