For Immediate Release
Mobile County Businessman Sentenced to Two Months in Prison and Ordered to Pay Restitution After Felony Conviction for Trafficking in Contraband Cigarettes
United States Attorney Richard W. Moore of the Southern District of Alabama announced that Thy Touch, a 45 year old resident of Mobile, Alabama was sentenced to two months incarceration followed by two years of supervised release and ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $2,285.28
On December 28, 2018, Thy Touch entered a guilty plea pursuant to a plea agreement and admitted in open court that a cooperating citizen (CI) identified Touch as an individual he illegally sold cigarettes to in the past, which allowed Touch to knowingly evade the taxes due on the cigarettes that was required by The State of Alabama Dept. of Revenue.
The ATF set up an undercover operation designed to confirm this conduct and to show that it continues. The ATF agents used the CI to act in an undercover capacity along with an undercover law enforcement officer to sell quantities of contraband cigarettes on numerous occasions to Touch that did not have a visible paid cigarette tax stamp affixed.
From December 2, 2017 through March 20, 2018, the CI sold 1,359 packs of untaxed Newport and Kool cigarettes to Touch for various amounts of money on six different occasions while Touch simultaneously operated his convenience store called “Pride,” located 1910 St. Stephens Road, Mobile, Alabama. The amount of cigarettes sold to Touch exceeded 10,000. The tax loss to the State of Alabama is $917.33. The tax loss to the Internal Revenue Service is $1,367.95.
Officers of the Mobile, Alabama Police Department and special agents of the ATF investigated the case and brought it to the U. S. Attorney=s Office for prosecution. The prosecutor assigned to the case is Assistant United States Attorney, Gina S. Vann.
A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Alabama at www.justice.gov/usao-sdal