Seriously, what is it with the cigarette smuggling? Sure tax hikes are annoying and a pain on the wallet, but it is it really worth having to resort to smuggling? The latest member of the Cigarette Smuggling Club (quick note: there is no actual Cigarette Smuggling Club and you should not attempt to seek one out because it does not exist and starting one is ill advised as well) is Chun “Eddy” Chen. Chen, a restaurant owner, played a minor part in a scheme which resulted in the selling of 17 million untaxed cigarettes.
Think about that number: 17 million. Trying to do the math on just how many packs that would be is insane enough as it is. Are the tax hikes really so bad that people are willing to risk jail time (in Chen’s case, a year and a half in prison)? It just does not seem to make sense. If people seriously want a cheaper alternative to cigarettes then why not just switch over to e cigarettes? It seems as though people are more willing to take a stupid easy way out instead of opting for a more intelligent easy way out (one that doesn’t end with the phrase “we the jury find the defendent”).
What is truly baffling is that he’s receiving 18 months in prison just for finding customers. He wasn’t even the actual buyer or seller of the cigarettes, which makes one imagine just how much worse trouble a person could be in for doing the actual buying or selling. If you want to smoke and spend less money in the long run, then do yourself a favor and switch to e cigarettes.
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