- Office of Attorney General Maura Healey
Media Contact for Milton Man Pleads Guilty to Running Illegal Tobacco Distribution Scheme
BOSTON — A Milton man has pleaded guilty and been sentenced in connection with running an illegal tobacco distribution network out of his home, as well as a self-storage facility in Randolph, Attorney General Maura Healey announced today.
James Indelicato, age 53, pleaded guilty on June 16 in Suffolk Superior Court to Tax Evasion (2 counts), Money Laundering (1 count), and Conspiracy (1 count). Indelicato was sentenced to six months in the House of Correction, suspended for a probationary period of three years, with the condition that he be barred from distributing tobacco products in the Commonwealth while on probation.
“This defendant orchestrated an intricate scheme in order to distribute tobacco illegally in various communities in our state,” AG Healey said. “Along with our state partners, we were able to successfully dismantle this operation and prosecute the individual running it.”
“The Illegal Tobacco Task Force aims to protect Massachusetts taxpayers and prevent businesses from depriving the Commonwealth of legitimate state revenue,” said DOR Commissioner Geoffrey E. Snyder. “Disregard for Massachusetts tax laws impacts all taxpayers, and we at the Department remain committed to working closely with both the Attorney General’s Office and the Illegal Tobacco Task Force.”
Indelicato was indicted in October 2019 in connection with his illegal tobacco distribution network along with Paul Veneto, of Braintree, following a referral from the Illegal Tobacco Task Force. The case against Veneto is ongoing.
From 2016 through 2018, Indelicato sold tobacco products that required taxes of over $360,000 and failed to pay any tax associated with the sale and distribution of the products. Indelicato imported smoking tobacco, cigars, and smokeless tobacco from distributors in Pennsylvania and then sold the products via delivery van to retail stores and gas stations in Abington, Boston, Dedham, Holbrook, Quincy, Randolph, and Weymouth.
Indelicato ran the scheme through his business, MetroMax Wholesale, and was able to sustain it by laundering the cash paid by retailers to purchase more tobacco products.
This case is being prosecuted by Assistant Attorney General Edward Beagan, Senior Trial Counsel in AG Healey’s White Collar and Public Integrity Division with assistance from Financial Investigator Anthony Taylor, of the AG’s Financial Investigations Division, Massachusetts State Police assigned to the AG’s Office, and the Massachusetts Department of Revenue.