02-22-2013, 05:02 PM
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Member Since: Sep 2001
The latest scandal: Honeygate
Sticky sting operation, Project Honeygate, catches smugglers | Canadian Manufacturing
BALTIMORE, Maryland—A Canadian man is among five people nabbed in “Project Honeygate,” a US Department of Homeland Security undercover investigation into an alleged honey importing scheme. |
Five people and two companies are accused of flooding the market with cheaper honey from China and avoiding $180 million in duties, said American Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials.
The Chinese honey was declared as other commodities and shipped through other countries to the United States to avoid anti-dumping duties.
Donald Couture, 60, the president, owner and operator of Premium Food Sales Inc, a broker and distributor of honey in Bradford, Ontario, was indicted on four counts of violating the Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act.
Officials say one of Couture’s customers in the US rejected four container loads of his honey because it contained tetracycline, a common antimicrobial drug.
It’s alleged Couture then sent the shipment to a different American customer without disclosing the presence of the antibiotic.
Couture was initially charged in a sealed complaint in November 2011 and the complaint was unsealed after he was indicted last week. Each count carries a maximum penalty of three years in prison and a $250,000 fine.
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