A trailer hauling 858,800 contraband cigarettes was seized on February 7 on the Trans-Canada Highway near Deacon’s Corner.
Officials with the Manitoba Finance Special Investigation Unit and RCMP stopped the vehicle near Highway 207 at around 4:30 a.m.
The trailer was towed to a compound in Winnipeg where a search warrant on its contents was executed. Officers found the large quantity of cigarettes either not marked or stamped for Manitoba tax purposes.
Charges are pending against two Fort Alexander men, aged 32 and 67. They each may face fines of $1,000 to $10,000 and/or up to six months in jail, as well as a triple tax penalty of $747,156. Manitoba stood to lose $249,052 in tax revenues should this tobacco have reached the black market.
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