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February 23rd, 2010:

Recession forces cocaine gangs to move into the booming illegal cigarette market

contraband tobacco

First published: February 22, 2010

Source: Irish Times

THE SMOKE SMUGGLERS: In the second part of our series, Crime Correspondent CONOR LALLY looks at the role of former republicans and organised crime gangs in the counterfeit cigarette industry

WHEN GARDAÍ and Customs officers staged a major raid on suspected cigarette smugglers in Monaghan last November they found something there weren’t expecting.

Instead of the usual large boxes of cigarettes – either fake imports or legitimately produced smokes on which import duties had not been paid – the authorities found evidence of a very sophisticated operation.

A search of a truck parked in a yard in smuggling country near Carrickmacross, Co Monaghan, yielded enough tobacco, cigarette paper, filters and packaging for 12 million cigarettes.


A New Policy on Tobacco Papers

death lights

First Published: February 22, 2010

Source: MainStreet

A new layer of color may be added to cigarette packs later this year when stricter federal tobacco labeling laws go into effect.

Instead of using the words “light” and “ultra-light,” tobacco companies will be using familiar color coding to help consumers identify their preferred smokes, according to The New York Times.


Prof. Pushes for Ban on Cigarettes

no cigarettesFirst published: February 22, 2010

Source: Korea Times

Professor Park Jae-gahb
Seoul National University
By Bae Ji-sook
Staff Reporter

A group of health experts and civic activists Monday called for the government to ban the manufacturing and distribution of cigarettes.

They urged the government to conduct intensive rehabilitation programs for smokers and encourage tobacco farms to convert to other industries.

The Tobacco Free World and the Korea Association of Health Promotion, among others, are pushing to prohibit the selling and making of tobacco products
within 10 years.

Those who violate a proposed law would be imprisoned up to five years or fined up to 50 million won. The members are planning to submit the bill to
the National Assembly within a year.


Cigarettes too cheap in Hong Kong: group

cheap cigarettesFirst published: February 22, 2010


Health groups in Hong Kong on Monday called for a sharp rise in tobacco duty as a study revealed cigarettes in the city are among the cheapest in the developed world.

Buying 1 000 cigarettes of one brand in Hong Kong costs just 217 US dollars (about R1 673) compared to 409 US dollars in New York and 503 US dollars in London.

Those cigarettes would also cost significantly more in Melbourne (277 US dollars), Singapore (361 US dollars), Paris (361 US dollars) and Dublin (577 US dollars), the survey found.


WHO Study Group on Tobacco Product Regulation

Click here to download the PDF of the new publication of WHO.

UK’s tobacco smoking strategy targets kids

16th Feb, 2010

The UK’s new tobacco strategy aims to make smoking history by ensuring fewer children take up the habit.

The strategy plans to reduce smoking among 11-15 year olds from 6 per cent to less than 1 per cent by 2020, and to reduce adult smoking from 21 per cent to fewer than 10 per cent by 2020.

Members of the Smokefree Action Coalition (SAC) say the strategy’s measures have broad appeal and should be implemented which ever political party wins the UK’s next general election.

The strategy also aims to:
•    Reduce exposure to children from secondhand smoke through targeted campaigns highlighting the benefits of smoke-free homes and cars;
•    Strengthening the National Health Services’ Stop Smoking Services;
•    Increase investment to further drive down tobacco smuggling;
•    Sustain high levels of spending on marketing campaigns to encourage smokers to quit;
•    Implement the retail display ban and ban on sale of tobacco from vending machines in the Health Act 2009; and
•    Commit to review the smoke-free legislation in 2010.

SAC member Action on Smoking and Health’s chief executive Deborah Arnott said the strategy demonstrated a continued commitment to tackling what is still the single, largest cause of preventable death and disease in this country.

“Building on the tremendous achievements of the past decade it will put us firmly on the path towards a smoke-free future for our children,” she said.

Close but no cigar


Published: February 23, 2010

Source: The Standard

If you thought it was only cigarettes that were dangerous to smoke, think again: a US study shows cigars and pipes also raise the risk of lung disease, defying their image of sophistication and celebration.

Researchers from the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey in New Brunswick found that even if the smoke is not inhaled, people who smoke cigars or pipes have a greater risk of airway damage that may lead to emphysema and other diseases.

Cigarette smoking is a well-known risk factor for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, a group of lung diseases that includes emphysema and chronic bronchitis, but few studies have looked at whether other types of smoking add to copd.

Researchers found that among more than 3,500 adults, those who have only smoked cigars or pipes were more likely than non-smokers to show obstructed airflow – a hallmark of copd – during tests of lung function.


Obama Administration Seeks $300 Billion from Tobacco Industry

Obama smokingFirst published: February 22, 2010

Source: Join Together

Both sides are appealing to the U.S. Supreme Court to rule in an ongoing court battle between the federal government and the tobacco industry over
cigarette companies’ long history of deceiving the public about the health risks of smoking.

The Associated Press reported Feb. 19 that the Obama administration has appealed a lower court ruling denying the government’s attempt to collect
$280 billion in past tobacco profits and to compel the industry to pay $14 billion for a national smoking-cessation program. Tobacco firms, on the
other hand, are appealing the lower court’s ruling that they illegally concealed information about the hazards of smoking.