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The Region : Indians Back in the Cigarette Business

May 16, 1985

Cabazon Indians reopened their discount cigarette business, offering name-brand smokes tax-free, at savings ranging from 90 cents to $1.90 a carton. The tribe, which also runs a bingo parlor in the Riverside County desert, had sold cigarettes tax-free until five years ago, when the state cracked down. But a tribal lawyer said a new federal court ruling "clearly establishes" the Cabazons' right to sell cigarettes without a state tax stamp. A spokesman for the state Board of Equalization, however, said his agency has already begun investigating Cabazon Smokeshop operations, adding that steps will be taken to force compliance.

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