Nearly a dozen convenience stores in the Triple Cities were targeted in a crackdown on the sale of untaxed cigarettes.

Authorities on Friday announced the arrest of 14 people for possessing or selling cigarettes that did not have required tax stamps.

Investigators say the arrests were the result of simultaneous sweeps of 11 convenience stores in Binghamton, Johnson City and Endicott.

A sign inside Prince Deli on Robinson Street after police made arrests in tax fraud investigation. (Photo: Bob Joseph/WNBF News)

Officials said the action was "one of the largest initiatives of its kind" in upstate New York. It involved New York State police and state tax enforcement agents, along with representatives of local police departments.

In a prepared statement, Broome County District Attorney Stephen Cornwell said "tobacco tax fraud is a serious crime" that cheats the county and state governments out of revenue.

Authorities said those who have been charged live in Binghamton, Johnson City, Endicott and Elmira. They said more arrests are anticipated.

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