Men Accused Of Selling Counterfeit Cigars
Detectives arrested a cigar shop manager and a storeowner they say were selling counterfeit stogies brand name cigars. On Tuesday, Broward Sheriff's Office investigators arrested Carolina Cigar Co. manager Allen Boyd, 47, and Smoke Café owner, James David Joiner, 63, both of Fort Lauderdale.
According to BSO detectives, agents representing Altadis USA, Inc., the corporate owners of such trademarked cigars as Monte-Cristo, Romeo y Julieta and H. Upmann Monarch, recently approached them regarding the possible sale of counterfeit cigars at the two businesses.
Detectives said they made three separate undercover purchases at each shop on Jan. 13, the second, Jan. 24 and the last on Feb. 3. Each time, the detectives, who were accompanied by Altadis USA, Inc. agents, said they purchased a couple of suspect cigar boxes valued at $250 each.
Investigators said since the buys were made in cash, shop vendors also illegally waived taxes on each purchase. The bogus cigars were then examined at Altadis USA, Inc. headquarters in Fort Lauderdale and determined to be counterfeit.
Tuesday, Boyd and Joiner were both taken into custody and nearly 45 boxes of suspect cigars were confiscated at each location.
Investigators said they believe that the counterfeit cigars were illegally packaged at the rear of each business and at a separate location in Miami-Dade County.
The total value of the confiscated bogus goods is estimated to be between $20,000 and $25,000.
The men are charged with one count each of vending goods with counterfeit trademarks. Both are free on $500 bond.