Forensic Investigative Associates, Rod Stamler and the U.S. “National Coalition against Crime and Tobacco Contraband”
During the Canadian smuggling ‘crisis’ of the early 1990s, one of the most prominent advocates for a tobacco tax rollback was Rod Stamler, former assistant commissioner of the RCMP. (Stamler was hired by the Canadian tobacco industry — see p. 10 of Imperial Tobacco’s memo to BAT headquarters about its tax rollback campaign.) Stamler and his firm, Forensic Investigative Associates, are still active on behalf of something called the “National Coalition against Crime and Tobacco Contraband.” This Coalition has all the hallmarks of a tobacco industry front group. However, FIA’s “reports” on the threat of tobacco smuggling in the United States are still widely circulated, often with no indication of who is paying the piper.
For further information:
- “Tobacco Smuggling and Tobacco Industry Accountability: Unanswered Questions” — NSRA press release, Jan. 20th, 1998, following the airing of a CBC fifth estatedocumentary on links between tobacco smugglers and senior RJR-Macdonald executives. Includes a section on the “Rod Stamler factor.” [temporarily (?) unavailable on-line]
- “The Privatization of Rodney Stamler” — eye weekly (Toronto), Oct. 21st, 1999.
- “Millions lost in smuggled smokes” — Detroit News, Oct. 24, 1995. One example of many of Stamler’s role as an unidentified tobacco industry apologist.
- “Organized Crime and the Smuggling of Cigarettes in the United States – The 1999 Update” — A recent FIA report, from the Brown & Williamson website. (Brown & Williamson is Imperial Tobacco of Canada’s U.S. sister company within the BAT group.) The U.S. National Association of Convenience Stores also regularly publishes FIA material on its tobacco page. As always, FIA concludes that tax increases would be catastrophic.