A 68-year-old man pleaded guilty Friday in Kansas City to his role in a conspiracy to take hundreds of thousands of cartons of untaxed cigarettes to New York state for sale, primarily on Indian reservations.
Gerald E. Barber pleaded guilty to wire fraud conspiracy and contraband cigarette trafficking.
He was president of a Grove, Okla., tobacco company owned by an Indian tribe there. He ordered cigarettes from a co-conspirator, who bought them from a wholesaler in Independence.
Barber then sold the cigarettes to shops on New York Indian reservations without paying the $4.35 per pack excise tax. Without the tax, those shops could undercut other retailers by more than $40 per carton, prosecutors said.
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