WATERTOWN, N.Y. (WWNY) - A 39 year old Hogansburg man has been arrested in connection with a $46.8 million money laundering scheme involving tobacco smuggling.
Federal officials arrested Carey Terrance and 2 other men last week following their indictment on July 23 on one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering.
Officials said Terrance, 46 year old Edgar Baker Jr. of North Carolina, and Jeffrey Doctor of Washington, D.C. worked together to acquire cut rag tobacco and smuggle it into Canada, where it was made into contraband cigarettes.
According to officials, members of the conspiracy sold the contraband cigarettes, made substantial profits by avoiding taxes and duties, and used some of their profits to buy more cut rag tobacco that they sent into Canada.
Funds to purchase the cut rag tobacco were sent from Canada, often through northern New York, to North Carolina, officials said.
Once purchased, the tobacco was delivered to warehouses and buildings in the northeastern U.S., including on the Akwesasne St. Regis Mohawk Indian Reservation, where it was staged for smuggling into Canada, federal official said.
Each truckload of tobacco in the scheme, totaling over 18 million pounds, was worth approximately $3 million in lost tax revenue for the Canadian and Quebecois governments.
The indictment alleges the conspiracy took place between 2013 and 2016.
If convicted, each defendant faces up to 20 years in prison, a fine of up to $500,000 or twice the value of the funds involved in the conspiracy, and a term of supervised release of up to 3 years.