An Upper East Side smoke shop was busted by the New York City Sheriff’s Office, accused of selling untaxed cigarettes, illegal flavored tobacco and even unlawful cannabis products. Trash bags filled with the contraband, were visible inside the doorway to ‘Convenience of Lexington,’ which was issued several criminal summons and civil violations.
NYPD officers from the 19th Precinct were also staged outside the small smoke shop located at 1436 Lexington Avenue, between East 93rd and 94th Streets, providing backup to the NYC Sheriff’s deputies, who are tasked with enforcing court orders and tackling financial crimes— like the unlicensed sale of untaxed cigarettes.
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Exclusive photos show the enforcement action in progress at the UES convenience store Thursday afternoon.
According to the Sheriff’s Office, 15 cartons of untaxed cigarettes— holding 150 packs of smokes– were seized along with flavored tobacco products, which are illegal to sell in New York City, and cannabis products.
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While use of recreational marijuana has been legalized in New York State, sales of cannabis or marijuana from unlicensed dispensaries remain illegal.
Clear plastic garbage bags filled with cigarettes, tobacco and cannabis crowded the entryway to the small Carnegie Hill convenience store Thursday afternoon, as Sheriff’s deputies filled out paperwork on the shop’s counter and made phone calls to colleagues.
“These actions are part of our ongoing Public Safety and Quality of Life Initiatives,” said Sheriff Anthony Miranda.
“We want to thank the community for their cooperation and support.”
Criminal court summons for sale of untaxed cigarettes and cannabis were issued, officials told Upper East Site, in addition to five civil violations with penalties totaling $5,000.
Two other UES shops were also cited during Thursdays inspections.
“We hear your complaints and are taking action,” Sheriff Miranda added.
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