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January 16th, 2008:

China Seizes 9 Billion Counterfeit Cigarettes In 2007

China seizes 9 bln counterfeit cigarettes in 2007 – ChinaView

BEIJING, Jan. 16 (Xinhua) — A total of 9.28 billion counterfeit cigarettes were seized nationwide in 2007, the State Tobacco Monopoly Administration (STMA) announced here on Wednesday.

Law enforcement agencies raided 3,876 counterfeit cigarette warehouses and rounded up 7,026 people in connection with the false brands, prosecuting 3,492 people, said STMA head Jiang Chengkang.

He added law enforcement agencies also solved 5,505 cases, each of which involved more than 50,000 yuan (about 6,906 U.S. dollars). Among those, 49 cases were valued at more than ten million yuan.

In 2006, the country seized 9.07 billion counterfeit cigarettes and cracked 24 major cases. Each were valued at more than ten million yuan and resulted in the prosecution of 2,313 people.

China’s tobacco industry generated 388 billion yuan in taxes and profits last year, a 25 percent year-on-year increase, according to the STMA.

By calculation, tobacco industry taxes and profits will account for about eight percent of the country’s fiscal revenue in 2007.