The way it looks, with the information that is available now, a Montefortuna customer noticed something amiss and has been trying to get resolution for a few months. Two days ago, the issue spilled over on to Reddit – and the result is that Montefortuna has confirmed that they sold an as of yet unknown quantity of counterfeit cuban cigars.
According to the company, the fraudulent cigars appear to be confined to Cohiba Robustos and Siglo VI. Montefortuna’s position is that a supplier duped them by including fakes side by side with genuine cigars – apparently making them more difficult to spot. Just a few short hours after the company’s statement was posted, someone is said to have discovered a suspect box of Behike cigars shipped by Montefortuna earlier this year, box images here. While we have some answers now, the really big new question is how many other retailers did this distributor supply cigars to? If this breach is proven to have occurred at the supplier level, we have no real way of knowing how widespread the fraud is or how many prominent retailers have been affected.
It is hard to see this playing out and not immediately think of the real life story that inspired the “Sour Grapes” documemtary. Rudy Kurniawan sold, in today’s dollars, nearly $50,000,000 in counterfeit wine that was so close to the real thing it was routinely authenticated by the world’s most respected experts. Sellers and smokers alike will surely be checking their humidors and inventories this week to see what chaos may be waiting for them within. A recent Privada video spent some time talking about the prevalence of counterfeits in the market today.
Information is still being gathered and a full timeline is being constructed for a more comprehensive article, but Montefortuna’s most recent statement can be read below:
This is a developing story and will be updated as more information becomes available.