NOBLE issued the statement prior to hearings scheduled for Oct. 7 and 8 of the Tobacco Products Scientific Advisory Committee, which will issue a report and recommendation on menthol early next year. The Advisory Committee has the power to recommend regulations or a ban of menthol cigarettes.
"NOBLE has serious concerns about the unintended consequences of a ban, which we believe would precipitate a robust and troubling illicit market. The possibility of a 'black market' economy in menthol cigarettes demands study," said Jessie Lee, NOBLE Executive Director. "We urge the Advisory Committee to properly study the potential ramifications of banning menthol.
"As a national police organization, NOBLE is concerned that illegal activity associated with banning menthol cigarettes could burden our law enforcement, judicial and prison systems and divert needed resources from more pressing problems. NOBLE is also concerned that enforcement activities could lead to inequities in law enforcement in African American communities."
The National Organization of Black Law Enforcement Executives (NOBLE) serves as the conscience of law enforcement by being committed to justice by action. NOBLE was founded in 1976 and represents more than 3,500 top federal, state, county and municipal law enforcement officials.