Investigations Division - Cigarette & Tobacco Products Inspection Program

The Cigarette and Tobacco Products Licensing Act of 2003, effective January 1, 2004, authorizes the Board of Equalization’s Investigation Division staff to inspect business locations and seize any untaxed tobacco products and cigarettes, including cigarettes without tax stamps, cigarettes affixed with counterfeit or other state stamps, or cigarettes to which cigarette tax stamps are affixed in violation of the specified prohibitions under the Master Settlement Agreement (Revenue & Taxation Code section 30165.1). "Unstamped" cigarette packs may include a pack of cigarettes that bears a tax stamp of another state, or cigarette pack, stamped or unstamped, that is marked "Not for sale in the United States." Untaxed tobacco includes tobacco products in inventory for which there are no valid purchase invoices that show excise taxes paid.

The table below reflects the results of current inspections conducted by the Investigations Division, and will be updated on a monthly basis. Prior year’s figures can be viewed using the year’s link below. Inspections conducted include retail, wholesale, and distributor business locations.

Year 2011 Number of Inspections Number of Cigarette Seizures Total Packs of Cigarettes Seized Number of Tobacco Product Seizures
Total Wholesale Cost of Tobacco Seized
January 636 7 1,118 14 6,621
February 825 10 1,471 29 151,979
March 1,076 18 974 20 28,862
April 851 7 499 13 3,607
May 1,026 6 17,891 10 2,712
June 1,008 14 2,002 16 11,538
July 830 7 3,659 12 2,535
August 716 8 864 20 5,470
September 909 5 542 11 31,561
October 880 12 1,774 13 2,626
November 786 10 3,948 17 3,984
December 812 7 2,894 14 2,610
Totals 10,355 111 37,636 189 254,105

Prior Years: