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During Prohibition, how did the activities of moonshiners and bootleggers benefit the City of Miami?

Prohibition

Confiscated bootleg liquor. Gleason Waite Romer, photographer. Florida Collection, Miami-Dade Public Library System.

During Prohibition, it was not difficult to get an alcoholic beveridge in Miami. Local moonshine operations were plentiful and largely uninhibited. Most of the forbidden liquor, however, arrived from offshore sources, such as the Bahamas and Cuba. Its proximity to those sources, as well as a long coastline with numerous inlets deep enough for small rum-running craft to use, made the east coast of Florida, and especially the southern part thereof, a major source of bootlegging activity. Indeed, bootlegging became a major industry in Miami. There grew up a profusion of well patronized speakeasies which carried on a regular and not particularly clandestine business. Enforcement of Prohibition laws by local officials was decidedly relaxed. When the law caught up with such illegal purveyors of strong drink, they readily remitted the requisit fines and, then, continued to operate.

Answer: Fines, regularly collected, helped fund the city's operating budget.

 

 

Posted at 06:00 AM on April 7, 2014 | Permalink

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