Comptroller FED Agents Arrest NY Man in Eastern Shore Cigarette Stop

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (August 27, 2018) - Comptroller Peter Franchot has announced that agents from his Field Enforcement Division (FED) have arrested a New York man who has been charged in Maryland as a result of a surveillance operation on Virginia’s Eastern Shore.

“My FED agents’ vigilance protects Maryland businesses and taxpayers from those who try to cheat the system with their illegal activities in transporting tobacco products through our state,” Comptroller Peter Franchot said. “I am very proud of their dedicated service and steadfast ability to identify these criminals.”

During the surveillance operation on Thursday, August 23, Nasser Manssour, 55, of Brooklyn, NY, driving a 2018 Chevrolet Tahoe SUV with New Jersey tags, was observed concealing cigarettes in the rear of the vehicle at a discount cigarette retail store on the Lower Shore area of Virginia. Agents said he then drove north on U.S. Route 13 into Maryland and was stopped at U.S. Route 13 and Sheep House Road in Pocomoke in Worcester County.

Agents searched the vehicle and found 2,820 packs of contraband cigarettes with a value of $18,189 and representing a tax loss to the State of $5,640. The contraband cigarettes and vehicle were seized and Manssour was placed under arrest.

Manssour was taken before a Worcester County District Court Commissioner in Snow Hill and charged with a felony count of transporting contraband cigarettes and a misdemeanor count of possession of contraband cigarettes.

A preliminary hearing has been set for September 14 at Worcester County District Court. Manssour was released on his own recognizance.

MEDIA CONTACTS:

Joseph Shapiro -  jshapiro@comp.state.md.us
410-260-7305 (office); 443-871-2244 (mobile)

Alan Brody -  abrody@comp.state.md.us
410-260-6346 (office); 443-924-1473 (mobile)