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Look How Easy it is to Import Counterfeit Chinese Cigarettes

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As tobacco taxes rise across the country -- and around the world -- two things seem to be happening.

Some people quit. And some people simply quit paying full price.

When there's a dishonest buck to be made, someone inevitably steps in to make it.

While Indian reservations are what most people immediately think of when discussing untaxed black market cigarettes, counterfeit smokes coming in from China have also overrun the market.

In Spain, according to the FT, "the sale of non-taxed, smuggled or counterfeit cigarettes from China has risen in one year from 0.5 per cent of the total market to 4.6 per cent."

Sydney, Australia is "flooded" with Chinese counterfeit cigarettes, England's counterfeit market is "burning out of control," and the black market is "feeding" Staten Island's smoking habit."

So, just how easy is it to set up shop as an importer of illegal, untaxed counterfeit Chinese cigarettes?

I headed over to, which advertises "Perfect American Cigarettes for You," and assures potential buyers:

"We care of our customers and and offer the quality products they may need. You can see an extensive assortment of cigarettes on our website."

The extensive assortment includes (ostensibly without the approval of the attorneys general of the states involved) not only counterfeit smokes, but counterfeit smokes with counterfeit tax stamps for pretty much any state you'd like -- just a FedEx shipment away:

23 bucks for a carton of Marlboro reds with tax stamps from Tennessee, Maryland, Texas, New York, Pennsylvania, or "Massachusettes"?

The same deal was on offer for Marlboro Lights and Newports. I clicked the "Live Help" button and I was chatting with a representative on the other side of the planet far faster than I have ever in my life been able to get a Verizon rep on the phone.

The following is our full, unedited conversation:

you 2011-6-14 11:0:23

SalerN0.1(9108666) 2011-06-14 22:59:15

you 2011-6-14 11:0:39
how long for shipment from china to united states?

SalerN0.1(9108666)2011-06-14 22:59:35

you 2011-6-14 11:0:57
tax stamp for any state available?

SalerN0.1(9108666)2011-06-14 23:00:10
which state do u need?

you 2011-6-14 11:1:34
ny, nj, florida, california, michigan

SalerN0.1(9108666)2011-06-14 23:00:46
no problem,we have all of them

you 2011-6-14 11:2:15
and it comes from china direct to united states?

SalerN0.1(9108666)2011-06-14 23:01:30

you 2011-6-14 11:3:11
no problem with customs?

SalerN0.1(9108666)2011-06-14 23:02:15
no problem,we can guarantee the delivery

you 2011-6-14 11:3:47
and the stamps look real?

SalerN0.1(9108666)2011-06-14 23:02:51

you 2011-6-14 11:4:32
what is the next step for delivery? make a purchase on your website?

SalerN0.1(9108666)2011-06-14 23:04:18
yeh,you can order on our website directly,and then we will ship it out in 24 hours

Over at, what I can only imagine must be the Boston Red Sox of fake smokes to's New York Yankees, the proprietor, "Allen," lays out a few more details regarding shipping.

Shipping info:

Sincerely do business with you, we need to make some agreements first. Any company has its principle, so it can live.
After your payments confirmed, We will send the items within 24 hours, and update your order status directly.

1. Generally speaking, shipping time is 6~12 workdays. If holidays like sunday or Chinese Legal Holidays, we will delay the delivery.

2. If the packages have problems with our customs, then we will be responsible for them, we will resend them and pay for the delivery charges.

3. If the packages can not pass your customs, then we will resend them again free shipping, but not again and again.

4. If the packages delivered your addresses, then you need to sign for it, if delivered failure, the package will be sent back to your local post office, and you need to pick it up within 5 days after delivery. If no one signs for it, then it will turned back to us, you need to pay for the whole shipping fee, and we resend, in this case if you want to refund, you only can get part except the shipping fee and credit card fee.

5. Dear Friends, life is so hard for all of us, so if you want us to resend again and again, you need to pay for the shipping fee and dredit card fee, about $11/carton, wish you can understand us, I will be many thank you!

6. About our quality, as we know, not all people like every product, so does cigarettes business. Our cigarettes are USA version, the tastes of our newports maybe a little different from your local. Some customers' reviews show our newports are not strong menthol, this is correct, but mainly customers are satisfy, and our cigarettes are not so high price for you. if you order like 100~200 cartons per time, will be much cheaper for you.

7. If you want to order more than 30 cartons(contain 30), please contact us, it's best if you can get more addresses, so that we can send them more effectively. One address only can be sent one package in a day, and the biggest package only can contain 10 cartons, e.g. if you order 50 cartons, we need to send them 5 times, if you only have one address, then we need to send them by 5 days, but if you have 5 addresses, we will send them in a day.

About the address, if you can get actual address, like your friends or relatives, this is best, because PO BOX addresses is high reject by customs.

Of course, since life is so hard for all of us, "Allen" also offers customers a "60 days money back guarantee":

"if you want us to refund, that is OK, but please see our agreements above first. of course we can not refund all your order, if that, we can not live!"

But, as always, buyer beware. The Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project says lab tests have shown counterfeit cigarettes from China to contain "80 percent more nicotine and 130 percent more carbon monoxide," and "impurities that include insect eggs and human feces."
POSITION:  No positions in stocks mentioned.