The Rhode Island Division of Taxation helped to investigate a multi-state illegal tobacco distribution network. The investigation led to the arrest and arraignment on Thursday of a man in Holyoke, Massachusetts.
“We allege that this defendant was running a multi-state criminal operation that involved transporting, selling and distributing illegal, untaxed cigarettes to convenience stores across Massachusetts and across state lines,” Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey said in a statement. “We will continue to work with our state and federal partners to crack down on those who evade the law and rob our state of needed tax revenue,” Healey said.
“This is the result of teamwork and of close cooperation and hard work among investigative authorities in multiple jurisdictions, including Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Connecticut,” said Rhode Island Acting Tax Administrator Neena S. Savage.
“We are proud of the efforts that the Rhode Island Division of Taxation’s Special Investigation Unit made over multiple months in this complex investigation. We will continue to work together with state and federal agencies to make sure that the law is upheld,” Savage said.
The case is being investigated by the Massachusetts Attorney General’s Office; the Massachusetts State Police; Holyoke Police; the Massachusetts Department of Revenue; the federal Bureau, of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms; the Connecticut Department of Revenue Services’ Special Investigations Section; the Providence Police Intelligence Unit; and the Rhode Island Division of Taxation’s Special Investigation Unit.