Possible cigarette scam nets 2 arrests

Posted: January 31, 2014

The Winchester Star

Jose Acosta
Alexander Urena-Rodriguez

WINCHESTER — Two New Jersey men were arrested Wednesday after allegedly trying to leave the state with more than 25 untaxed cartons of cigarettes.

Alexander Urena-Rodriguez, 42, of the first block of Boyd Street, Lodi, N.J., and Jose Acosta, 29, of the 700 block of 20th Avenue, Paterson, N.J., appeared separately via video Thursday in Frederick County General District Court on charges of possession with intent to distribute untaxed cigarettes.

Urena-Rodriguez — whose charge was his second offense in the state — was granted a $5,000 secured bond, and Acosta was granted a $1,000 secured bond.

Both men remained in the Northwestern Regional Adult Detention Center as of Thursday night, according to records.

A criminal complaint filed in the case states that Urena-Rodriguez and Acosta were stopped Wednesday in a rental car by a Frederick County Sheriff’s Office deputy.

When they were stopped, they allegedly had more than 25 cartons of cigarettes each and were traveling out of the state with them.

The complaint does not state exactly how many cartons each man had.

Urena-Rodriguez was charged in September by Fredericksburg police for the same crime, according to the criminal complaint.

The men are both due back in Frederick County General District Court at 2 p.m. on May 6.

— Contact Melissa Boughton at mboughton@winchesterstar.com