Man pleads guilty in multi-million dollar counterfeit cellphone scheme.

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According to CBS 2 news in Boise, Idaho – a man in Boise pleased guilty to trafficking in counterfeit cellphones and accessories. Artur Pupko, age 28, pleaded guilty to selling counterfeit cellphones and cellphone accessories on Amazon and eBay.
According to court documents, Pupko would buy bulk products from China, then repackage the products and claiming them as new and genuine. Pupko may face up to 10 years in prison and a $5 million dollar fine. Sentencing will occur on December 17, 2019.
If you have had your goods seized by Customs and are facing criminal or civil penalties, contact experienced seizure attorney David Hsu by text/call at 832-896-6288 or by email at attorney.dave@yahoo.com, dh@gjatradelaw.com.

CBP intercepts destructive long-horned beetles.

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Spondylindinae (Cerambycidae) larvae, source: CBP.gov

According to a CBP media release, CBP Officers in Baltimore intercepted the long-horned beetle larvae species known as Spondylidinae (Cerambycidae). According to Customs, the Long-horned beetle larvae are voracious wood borers that can cause extensive damage to living trees or untreated lumber.
After discovering the larvae, CBP issued an EAN (Emergency Action Notification) requiring the importer to re-export the shipment. Additionally from our experience, CBP will also issue a civil penalty for non-compliant wood packaging material.
This seizure in Baltimore is just a typical day for CBP, where CBP agriculture specialists across the nation seize approximately 4,552 prohibited plant, meat, animal byproduct, and soil, and intercepted 319 insect pests at U.S. ports of entry per day.
If you have had a wood packaging material penalty notice, or have received an Emergency Action Notification, contact experienced customs attorney David Hsu at 832-896-6288 or by  email at attorney.dave@yahoo.com, dh@gjatradelaw.com.

CBP seizes prohibited fertilizer from Mexico.

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Bottle of seized fertilizer, source: CBP.gov

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) in Baltimore along with agriculture specialists detained two travelers from California carrying a bottle of what was declared as “organic liquid fertilizer” containing soil, compost, ashes and cattle manure.
As soil may contain invasive pests and other items such as weed seeds and fungal and bacterial diseases, US agriculture specialists tested the fertilizer. Since cattle manure poses an agriculture threat for cattle diseases, it is not allowed entry into the US unless an import permit and certificate the manure was properly treated.
If you have had a customs or CBP seizure and want your items back, contact experienced seizure attorney David Hsu at 832-896-6288 or by email at attorney.dave@yahoo.com, dh@gjatradelaw.com.

5,200 counterfeit refrigerator water filters seized.

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Image of seized water filters, source: CBP.gov

According to a U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), CBP officers at LA/Long Beach port seized 5,202 counterfeit refrigerator water filters that if genuine would have an estimated manufacturer’s suggested retail price (MSRP) of $224,202.

The counterfeit filters contained trademarks registered by Brita, GE, Frigidaire, PUR and NSF Certification. As you are aware, trademark owners can register their trademark and CBP will seize infringing use of such trademarks.

The filters were shipped from China and were to be delivered to an address in Washington.

If you or anyone you know has had a shipment seized for suspected infringement of trademarks, contact experienced seizure attorney David Hsu by phone/text at 832-896-6288 or by email at attorney.dave@yahoo.com, dh@gjatradelaw.com.

Counterfeit e-cigarettes seized by CBP.

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According to a US Customs and Border Protection media release, CBP officers in Phliadelphia seized 300 counterfeit Juul e-cigarette pods. The counterfeit brands were Eonsmoke and VGOD branded cigarette pods of various flavors from Hong Kong. 
After the pods were seized, CBP’s Consumer Products and Mass Merchandising Centers evaluated the goods and verified they were counterfeit. The fake e-cigarettes have a MSRP of $11,500 if authentic. This seizure follows an April seizure of 1,152 counterfeit Juul pods.
As with any media release on counterfeit goods, CBP was quick to point out the dangers of counterfeit goods – especially products such as e-cigarettes which have the potential to damage the health of the users.
If you or someone you know has had a counterfeit seizure, contact experienced customs attorney David Hsu by phone/text at 832-896-6288 or by email at attorney.dave@yahoo.com, dh@gjatradelaw.com.

CBP incorporates US Virgin Islands into ACE.

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According to a U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) media release, this week, the CBP has incorporated the U.S. Virgin Islands into the Automated Commercial Environment (ACE) in order to expedite the importation process.   This marks the end of a 3-year process known as the ““Paving the way forward: Transforming the V.I. Trade through Technology”.

As you are aware, the Automated Commercial Environment (ACE) is the system through which the trade community reports imports and exports and the government determines admissibility. 
CBP officers and representatives were also in the VI to perform training and to introduce the ACE system along with the APHIS Fruits and Vegetables Import Requirements (FAVIR) database.  The FAVIR database allows customers to search fruits and vegetables by commodity and or country.
Besides discussing ACE and FAVIR, CBP also discussed the risk of importing counterfeit medicine and merchandise – with CBP stressing that “medicine can be dangerous and pose a great risk to your health” and that the ” proceeds from the sales of illicit and counterfeit goods can have a negative impact on the economy”.

CBP seizes counterfeit HD action cameras.

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Image of the seized shipment, source: cbp.gov

According to a U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) media release, officers at the Dallas Fort Worth port of entry seized 4,000 counterfeit high definition cameras for intellectual property rights (IPR) violations. The MSRP of these cameras totaled $241,076.

The 4,000 high definition cameras were shipped in 220 boxes to an address in Carrollton. The shipment from Hong Kong was inspected and CBP officers believed the merchandise to be counterfeit due to poor quality packaging and shipping not normal for the genuine merchandise.

CBP’s Import Specialist Division confirmed the items were counterfeit with the company’s trademark holder.

What happens after something is seized by Customs? 
CBP will issue a Notice of Seizure (seizure notice). The seizure notice will indicate the item seized, the value of the shipment and the options available to the importer of record.

Time is of the essence in responding to Customs so an answer or other action must be taken immediately.

What happens if you do nothing after you receive notice from Customs?
If nothing is done within 30 days from the notice of seizure date, CBP will begin forfeiture and ultimately will destroy the seized items.

If you have had your goods seized by Customs, contact experienced seizure attorney David Hsu at 832-896-6288 or by email at attorney.dave@yahoo.com, dh@gjatradelaw.com.

CBP seizes $1 million dollars worth of counterfeit phones.

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Image of the seized phones, source: cbp.gov

According to a U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) media release, officers in Philadelphia seized a a combined 4,449 counterfeit LG and ASUS smartphones in July. If the phones were authentic, they would have a manufacturer’s suggested retail price (MSRP) of $941,450.

The counterfeit phones were shipped from China and included 2,043 counterfeit LG phones in the first shipment and 1,926 LG and 480 ASUS counterfeit smartphones in the second shipment.

According to Customs, the phones were shipped from China to the Dominican Republic and then to Philadelphia. The phones were described in the paperwork as “cell phones used”. CBP says the phones will be destroyed.

If you have had your cell phones seized, contact experienced cellphone seizure attorney David Hsu immediately at 832-896-6288 or by email at attorney.dave@yahoo.com, dh@gjatradelaw.com.

CBP says the phones will be “destroyed”, however, there hasn’t been enough time from the date of the seizure to the date of the media release – there is still time to do something to get the phones released.

There are ways to get the phones released, contact David Hsu immediately – time is of the essence!

CBP seizes $3.4 million worth of counterfeit luxury goods.

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According to a U.S. Customs and Border Protection media release, CBP officers in Los Angeles seized handbags, belts, shoes, watches, electronics and other counterfeit items from brands such as Hermes, Fendi, Gucci, Versace, Casio and Samsung from a shipment originating from Hong Kong.

Import specialists stopped the shipment and seized over 5,300 counterfeit products that have an estimated MSRP of $3,475,000. The seizures included 1,242 counterfeit Gucci belts, 678 counterfeit Nike shoes, 531 counterfeit Louis Vuitton, 500 counterfeit Samsung adaptors and 502 counterfeit Gucci fanny packs among other items.

If you have had items seized by Customs due to suspicion of being counterfeit, contact experienced seizure attorney David Hsu at 832-896-6288 or by email at attorney.dave@yahoo.com, dh@gjatradelaw.com.

Hong Kong Customs in the news again – seizing counterfeit dolls (stuffed animals?) from claw machines.

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According to the website insideretail.hk, it Hong Kong Customs authorities seized counterfeit dolls and toys found in “claw machines” as part of “Operation Octopus”. The total seized value of the goods totaled about $38,000 USD.

The article did not specify what type of dolls were counterfeit, but my guess is the stuffed animals were Hello Kitty, Disney or other licensed plush animals. No photo was included in the article – but most likely the word “dolls” here refers to stuffed animals.

HK Customs seized 2700 dolls, 15 claw machines and 5 change machines.