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Customs Fraud

This archive displays posts tagged as relevant to fraud in customs and tariffs. You may also be interested in the following pages:

Page 5 of 5

DOJ Catch Of The Week -- Ameri-Source

Posted  02/26/16
By the C|C Whistleblower Lawyer Team This week's Department of Justice "Catch of the Week" goes to the Pennsylvania-based Ameri-Source importer companies -- Ameri-Source International Inc., Ameri-Source Specialty Products Inc., Ameri-Source Holdings Inc. -- their owners, Ajay Goel and Thomas Diener, and the related importer, SMC Machining LLC, incorporated at Goel’s direction and formerly owned by his wife.  On...

December 21, 2015

Texas-based University Furnishings LP and its general partner, Freedom Furniture Group Inc., agreed to pay $15 million to settle charges they violated the False Claims Act by making false statements to avoid paying duties on wooden bedroom furniture imported from China.  According to the government, between 2009 and mid-2012, University Furnishings misclassified wooden bedroom furniture on documents presented to U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) to avoid paying antidumping duties on imports of wooden bedroom furniture manufactured in China.  The companies allegedly classified the furniture as office and other types of furniture not subject to duties while selling the furniture in the student housing market for use in dormitory bedrooms.  The allegations originated in a whistleblower lawsuit brought by University Loft Company under the qui tam provisions of the False Claims Act.  University Loft will receive a whistleblower award of $2.25 million from the proceeds of the government’s recovery. DOJ

September 4, 2015

Robert Wingfield and Bill Ma agreed to pay $385,000 and $50,000, respectively, to resolve allegations they violated the False Claims Act by engaging in a scheme to evade customs duties on imports of aluminum extrusions from China.  Wingfield was the US sales representative for Tai Shan Golden Gain Aluminum Products Ltd., the Chinese company that exported the aluminum extrusions in this case.  According to the government, Wingfield conspired with domestic importers to submit false information to the government to evade duties, and Ma later formed a company, Northeastern Aluminum Corp., to act as the importer of record for the goods in an attempt to shield the real importers from liability.  The allegations originated in a whistleblower lawsuit filed by James F. Valenti Jr. under the qui tam provisions of the False Claims Act.  Valenti will receive a whistleblower award of approximately $79,000.  DOJ

February 12, 2015

Three importers agreed to pay more than $3M to resolve allegations they violated the False Claims Act by lying to US Customs and Border Protection agents to evade customs duties on imports of aluminum extrusions from China.  The companies, which included California-based C.R. Laurence Co. Inc., Florida-based Southeastern Aluminum Products Inc.and Texas-based Waterfall Group LLC, sell shower doors and shower enclosures made with the aluminum extrusions.  The charges were first raised in a whistleblower lawsuit brought by James F. Valenti Jr. under the qui tam provisions of the False Claims Act.  He will receive a whistleblower award of $555,000.  DOJ

November 14, 2013

Basco Manufacturing agreed to pay $1M to resolve allegations that it violated the False Claims Act by making false customs declarations to avoid paying duties on products imported from a Chinese manufacturer, and that it has filed a complaint against four other companies and two individuals based on similar allegations. The allegations were first raised in a qui tam lawsuit filed under the whistleblower provisions of the False Claims Act. DOJ
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