Cops from the 76th Precinct hit the nicotine jackpot last week after making a routine traffic stop at Hamilton Avenue and Centre Street in Red Hook, discovering a huge cache of illegal cigarettes secreted in the vehicle.
Officers Carlos Achundia and Sam Ouk stopped the 29-year-old driver at around 11:30 pm for failing to signal, and upon routine inspection, found 337 cartons of smokes, according to Capt. John Lewis, the commanding officer of the precinct.
The cigarettes — mostly Newports — have a street value of more than $40,000 — and an equivalent in-store price tag of $60,000.
The man was charged with transporting unstamped cigarettes and evading tobacco taxes.
“That’s just a great job on their parts,” Lewis said of his cops.
The cigarettes will eventually be destroyed, he added.