Two Convicted Of Counterfeiting Thousands Of Luxury Goods
HOUSTON – Two men from China, found with more than 14,000 fake luxury items, have been convicted of counterfeiting, United States Attorney Kenneth Magidson announced today. Yintang Cao, 48, and Hong Zhang, 46, entered a guilty plea to the charge just moments ago before U.S. District Judge Lee Rosenthal.
The charges arose after Cao and Zhang were discovered with more than 14,000 counterfeit items bearing the names of Coach, Dolce & Gabbana, Louis Vuitton, Prada and Versace, manufactures of luxury fashion goods.
Cao and Zhang were charged with separate, but related, criminal informations on March 15, 2013. Today, they admitted they knowingly used counterfeit marks on and in connection with such goods, identical to and substantially indistinguishable from genuine marks, the use of which was likely to cause confusion, mistake and to deceive.
Judge Rosenthal has set sentencing for Aug. 9, 2013, at which time both men face up to 10 years in federal prison as well as a $2 million fine. They were permitted to remain on bond pending their sentencing hearing.
The felony Information and subsequent convictions came after an intensive investigation conducted by Homeland Security Investigations.