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United States v. Gzuniga Ltd., et al.

Docket Number

On November 17, 2023, Gzuniga, Ltd., Nancy Teresa Gonzalez de Barberi, and Mauricio Giraldo pleaded guilty to conspiracy and smuggling charges (18 U.S.C. §§ 371, 545). A final co-defendant, John Aguilar is fighting extradition from Colombia.

Between February 2016 and April 2019, the defendants illegally imported designer handbags made from caiman and python skin, both CITES-protected species. They solicited friends, relatives, and employees of Gonzalez’ manufacturing company in Colombia, called C.I. Diseño Y Moda, to act as couriers and transport the designer handbags in their clothing or in their luggage while traveling on passenger airlines. Once the designer handbags were smuggled into the United States, they were transported or shipped to the Gzuniga showroom in Manhattan, New York, where employees placed them on display for high-end retailers to view and purchase as stock for their stores. The average retail price for these “Nancy Gonzalez” brand handbags exceeded $2,000.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Office of Law Enforcement conducted the investigation.

Case Open Date
Case Name
United States v. Gzuniga Ltd., et al.
Case Type
  • Environment
Updated January 11, 2024