Comptroller: Fear Cig Smuggling Becoming Go-To Crime - 47 ABC - Delmarva's Choice

Comptroller: Fear Cig Smuggling Becoming Go-To Crime

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Adel Abuzahrieh Adel Abuzahrieh
Basel Ramadan Basel Ramadan
Samir Ramadan Samir Ramadan

OCEAN CITY, Md. - New details emerge on two Ocean City brothers, Basel and Samir Ramadan arrested for their alleged involvement in a multi-million dollar cigarette smuggling ring.

Authorities believe they may have been funding an international terrorist organization.

Another man involved in the scheme, Adel Abuzahrieh from Staten Island, N.Y. is being held at SCI in Georgetown, after troopers arrested the him during a traffic stop near Milford. Police say they found more than 200 cases of cigarettes in the box truck he was driving and seized at least $15,000 in cash.

We've also learned the Ramadan brothers have some legal issues with the State of Maryland. We spoke with Comptroller Peter Franchot, who says the state is working with the New York Task Force to help combat this issue.

"It validates my fear that cigarette smuggling is becoming the go-to crime for organized criminals," said Comp. Peter Franchot. "It's very lucrative and the penalties are very small."

Ocean City officials confirm that the brothers owned at least four businesses off of Coastal Highway: two Subways, Village Market and 9th Street Market.

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