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Investigators say man was trying to sell untaxed cigars to Buffalo delis

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Posted at 10:30 AM, Jun 25, 2019
and last updated 2019-06-25 10:30:07-04

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WKBW) — A Buffalo man is facing charges after investigators say he was selling untaxed cigars to local delis.

Investigators with the New York State Department of Taxation and Finance say 40-year-old Mohamed Saleh was driving to Pennsylvania to pick up tobacco products, then brought them back to Buffalo to sell. Almost 8,300 untaxed cigars were seized, along with almost $800 cash. Saleh was arrested when investigators say he tried to deliver untaxed cigars to a Buffalo deli. In the press release for the arrest, investigators included a photo of a box covered with a blanket, which contained the cigars.

The NYS Executive Deputy Commissioner of Taxation and Finance Andrew Morris said of the case, "Those who evade our cigarette and tobacco products tax deprive communities and the state of revenue needed for vital services and put honest businesses at a competitive disadvantage."

Saleh is charged with possessing more than 2,500 untaxed cigars, and additional charges are pending. He'll appear in Erie County Court July 15th.