Two Los Angeles-area residents appeared in federal court for the first time today, charged separately with trafficking in counterfeit designer goods.
In the first case, Fatemeh Jaghouri, 47, of Glendale, appeared in federal court in Los Angeles this morning for arraignment on an information charging her with one count of trafficking in counterfeit goods. Jaghouri has agreed to plead guilty to trafficking in counterfeit goods that bore fake trademarks registered by Gucci America, Salvatore Ferragamo Italia, Louis Vuitton Malletier and Fendi, among others.
According to a plea agreement filed in Jaghouri’s case, Jaghouri and her husband owned Augment Accessories in Los Angeles where they sold purses, handbags and wallets that appeared to be designer brands but were not because these goods had counterfeit trademarks affixed to them. Jaghouri imported 360 cartons of counterfeit items to Los Angeles from China, where they were kept in a warehouse controlled by Jaghouri.
Jahouri is expected to plead guilty to the charge during the week of August 25 before United States District Judge A. Howard Matz. As a result of the anticipated guilty plea, Jahouri faces a maximum possible sentence of 10 years in federal prison and a $2 million fine.
In the second case, Christopher Burke Carter, 26, was arrested this morning at his home in Monterey Park pursuant to a criminal complaint filed on July 29. Carter made his initial court appearance this afternoon on the complaint that charges him with one count of trafficking in counterfeit goods.
According to the complaint, Carter operated a warehouse in Monterey Park that was used to store and sell counterfeit goods, including products that appeared to be manufactured by companies such as Gucci America, Louis Vuitton Malletier, Burberry Limited and others. Approximately 570 cartons of counterfeit goods that authorities estimate were worth more than $6 million were seized by Special Agents with the Bureau of Immigration and Customs Enforcement on April 1, 2003.
Carter made his initial appearance before a magistrate judge in federal court on Monday afternoon and was ordered held without bond until a hearing on Wednesday afternoon. He is scheduled to be arraigned on September 8. If convicted of the charge in the complaint, Carter faces a maximum possible sentence of 10 years in federal prison and a $2 million fine.
CONTACT: Assistant United States Attorney Elena J. Duarte (213) 894-8611
Release No. 03-115