An ICIJ Investigation Tobacco Underground

The world’s most widely smuggled legal substance

The illicit trafficking of tobacco is a multibillion-dollar business, fueling organized crime and corruption, robbing governments of needed tax money, and spurring addiction to a deadly product.

In this investigation

Tobacco Underground
eBook: Tobacco Underground
Tobacco Underground
Resources: Tobacco Smuggling
Tobacco Underground
Glossary of Tobacco Smuggling

Key findings

  • Tobacco Underground is a project of the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists. Working with reporters in more than a dozen countries, ICIJ is charting the frontlines of the illicit traffic in cigarettes.
  • During 2000 and 2001, a team of reporters from the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists broke a series of landmark stories exposing how leading tobacco companies worked with criminal networks to smuggle cigarettes around the world.

About this investigation

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More articles

Notorious as a haven for smugglers and money launderers, Kaliningrad, Russia, is not a place where it’s safe to ask many questions.…

Notorious as a haven for smugglers and money launderers, Kaliningrad, Russia, is not a place where it’s safe to ask many questions.…

Notorious as a haven for smugglers and money launderers, Kaliningrad, Russia, is not a place where it’s safe to ask many questions.…

Sociologist Luk Joossens is one of the world’s top experts on tobacco smuggling. In 1995, he co-authored a paper that alerted the…

Video of 5e9ZBcSexyw December 17, 2009, 2:30 pm

Tobacco Underground

Made To Be Smuggled

Russian contraband cigarettes are ‘flooding’ Europe.

Tobacco Underground

SMOKE2U

Tobacco Sales Take Off in Cyberspace.

How America’s Top Cigarette Firms Fueled a Billion-Dollar Underground Trade.

Indian tobacco factories, organized crime control a billion-dollar black market.

Montenegrins may have been surprised late last year to learn that the global financial crisis had arrived in their tiny Balkan country.…

Tobacco Underground

The Montenegro Connection

Love, Tobacco, and the Mafia.

Big Tobacco’s Overproduction Fuels $2 Billion Black Market.

Paraguay’s Corruption Fuels a Criminal Economy.

Tobacco Underground

中国“万宝路”之乡

庞大的地下烟草产业使中国成为全球假烟巨头 国际调查报道记者同盟.

Tobacco Underground

El Gran ‘Duty Free’

Paraguay es uno de los mayores productores mundiales de cigarrillos de contrabando.

Tobacco Underground

Smuggling Made Easy

Landlocked Paraguay emerges as a top producer of contraband tobacco.

Tobacco Underground

China’s Marlboro Country

A massive underground industry makes China the world leader in counterfeit cigarettes.

Tobacco Underground

The Taliban and tobacco

Smuggled cigarettes give boost to Pakistani militants.

Tobacco Underground

Going Undercover

Inside Baltic Tobacco’s smuggling empire.

Tobacco Underground

‘The Guy In The Wheelchair’

How an El Paso smuggler moved a half-billion cigarettes across America.

Tobacco Underground

Smoking Dragon, Royal Charm

A tale of four FBI agents, 62 Chinese smugglers, and a billion bogus cigarettes.

Tobacco Underground

Blame the distributor

How Gallaher stayed in the smuggling game.

Tobacco Underground

How to get away with smuggling

Canada’s billion-dollar deal for Big Tobacco.

Tobacco Underground is a project of the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists. Working with reporters in more than a dozen countries, ICIJ is…

The illicit trafficking of tobacco is a multibillion-dollar business, fueling organized crime and corruption, robbing governments of needed tax money, and spurring addiction to a deadly product.

Tobacco Underground

Terrorism and tobacco

Extremists and insurgents turn to cigarette smuggling.

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