Russell Springs man accused of selling cigarettes without paying taxes

A Russell County man took part in contraband cigarette sales, a federal grand jury has charged.

David B. Cooper, 46, of Russell Springs allegedly sold more than 10,000 cigarettes in 2007 on which he had not paid the required excise tax, according to David J. Hale, U.S. attorney for Western Kentucky.

Cooper sold untaxed cigarettes by telephone and mail order through a company called DS Marketing, according to a news release.

Cooper also owned a company called Tantus Tobacco in Russell County. Some of the cigarettes Cooper allegedly sold illegally were made by Tantus, according to the indictment.

He is charged with defrauding Kentucky and other states out of $97,487 in taxes.

Cooper was indicted Wednesday in Bowling Green. He faces up to five years in prison if convicted.

His attorney, David Oscar Markus, strongly disputed the charge and called the case a waste of government resources. "We are looking forward to exposing this case for what it really is — total BS," Markus said in an email.