Tariff crimes are those that pertain to taxes collected on goods being imported or exported, especially the avoidance of such taxes, and involve customs fraud and smuggling. The purpose of such taxes, apart from simple revenue generation, is to impose some controls on trade in order to benefit domestic industries. When a good can be produced more cheaply (or with greater value) in another country, imposing a tariff on it increases the price so that domestic goods are better able to compete with it. Some tariffs, called protective tariffs, exist primarily for this purpose, to protect domestic business interests; others, particularly when the imported good has no domestic competitor, simply provide a revenue stream for the government. For much of American history, the bulk of ...

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