The Washington Post

City, states settle with USPS over cigarettes


New York City and four states that had filed a lawsuit against the U.S. Postal Service announced a settlement Monday in which the agency agreed it would destroy packages of cigarettes sent illegally to the United States from other countries.

The city and California had initially filed the lawsuit in 2019, and were joined in 2020 by Connecticu­t, Illinois and Pennsylvan­ia.

In a statement, the Postal Service said while it “considers that it has always been in full compliance with federal law regarding the handling of cigarette packages in internatio­nal mail, we do support the goals of the settlement agreement, and for that reason we have decided to resolve this lawsuit.”

In the suit filed in federal court in Brooklyn, the plaintiffs said the Postal Service wasn’t doing enough to enforce the Prevent All Cigarette Traffickin­g law of 2010. The law prohibits the mailing of cigarettes in most cases.

Plaintiffs said tens of thousands of packages sent from other countries instead made it through the postal system for delivery, and said when packages were found, the agency would return them to senders instead of destroying them.

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