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Tobacco companies win, have decision overturned

JACKSON — The Mississippi Supreme Court has sided with tobacco companies who argued that a state tax on cigarettes sold at retail outlets outside the state was unfair.

Yesterday’s decision overturned a 2011 decision by a Hinds County judge who found the tax fair. However, the issue is moot because lawmakers repealed the tax in 2011 while the lawsuit was pending.

In its 2009 lawsuit, Corr-Williams Co. said Mississippi’s fee on cigarettes that passed through warehouses in the state violates the U.S. Constitution by applying an unfair burden on cigarettes sold through interstate commerce.

The lawsuit did not challenge the portion of the law that applies taxes to products sold in Mississippi.

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