By Brian Schultz
A traffic stopped helped net 1.2 million illegal cigarettes on Thursday in Headingley.
The Manitoba Taxation Investigations Unit, with the assistance of the Winnipeg Police Service and the RCMP made the seizure after a three-ton U-Haul truck was stopped. During the inspection, 120 cases of contraband cigarettes were discovered in the truck.
Six-thousand plastic bags, each containing 200 cigarettes, were seized by Manitoba Finance. None of the cigarettes or packages had proper tax stamps for Manitoba or Canada.
Two men from Quebec are facing charges under the Manitoba Tobacco Tax Act and the Excise Act.
Taxes avoided on the cigarettes are equal to $246,000. The men could face fines of up to $5,000, imprisonment for up to three months or both, if convicted.
A tax penalty of $738,000 could also be assessed.
This is likely the same traffic stop that caught members of the Hells Angels yesterday.