BUY ILLEGAL TOBACCO AND IT WILL COST YOU IN THE LONG RUN.
Under the Tobacco Tax Act, unless otherwise authorized, it is illegal to buy, possess or distribute any quantity of untaxed or unregulated cigarettes or other tobacco products.
The government also introduced legislation that amended the Tobacco Tax Act to increase fines for offences related to marked tobacco products.
Without proper authorization under the Tobacco Tax Act, it is against the law to have any packages of cigarettes or fine cut tobacco that do not have a legal tobacco stamp. Consequences include civil penalties, and, if charged and convicted of an offence, possible fines, jail time or both. These are the facts.
Prison, fines, criminal record.
Consequences of having any packages of cigarettes or fine cut tobacco without the tobacco stamp include civil penalties, and, if charged and convicted of an offence, possible fines, jail time or both. If you are in possession of unmarked cigarettes you may be fined three times the tax on the unmarked cigarettes you possessed. See below the consequences of illegal tobacco products.
Easy ways to recognize illegal tobacco products.
Here are the three ways to recognize illegal tobacco products.
- Packages of legal cigarettes and fine cut tobacco in Ontario are identified by a YELLOW stamp. This tobacco stamp has a YELLOW background with the letters ‘’ON’’ in white and in black letters the words ‘’DUTY PAID CANADA DROIT ACQUITTÉ’’. If you don’t see this YELLOW stamp, you are breaking the law.
- The provincial and federal taxes add up to at least $55 per carton of 200 cigarettes. Cartons sold for less than $55 are likely illegal.
- The provincial and federal taxes add up to at least $5.50 per pack of 20 cigarettes. Packs sold for less than $5.50 are likely illegal.
If your product does not comply with the information above, it’s illegal.
Addressing illegal tobacco.
Combating illegal tobacco is one of the Government of Ontario’s priorities. These activities result in a loss of revenue that supports important programs for Ontarians and creates unfair competition for legal businesses that comply with Ontario laws, such as your local convenience store.
Don’t be fooled by illegal tobacco products. Get informed and don’t get fined.
If you see illegal tobacco products or people selling illegal tobacco products, call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS. For more information, call 905-845-9152.