ATLANTA (CN) – A wholesaler that imported more than 20,000 counterfeit Atlanta Braves baseball caps into the United States must pay nearly $700,000 in fines, a federal judge ruled.
In December 2008, the U.S. Custom and Border Protection seized 20,160 Atlanta Braves baseball caps, which were determined to be counterfeit goods from China, at the Port of Atlanta. Billion International Trading, a California-based corporation, was listed as the importer of the caps, which were intended for resale to a retailer in Atlanta, according to court papers.
After Billion International failed to pay civil fines assessed by the government, the Federal Court in Atlanta entered a default judgment against the company in September 2011, ordering it to pay close to $650,000 in fines and almost $40,000 pre-judgment interest.
After Billion International failed to reverse the judgment for lack of personal jurisdiction, the United States asked the court to enforce an installment repayment plan.
U.S. District Judge William Duffey Jr. approved the plan last week, ordering Billion International to pay $1,000 a month until the judgment and interest is repaid in full.
Billion International made no efforts to pay the fines and refused to provide financial statements and tax returns, according to the May 18 ruling.
Since Billion International admitted that it makes more than $15 million a year from clothing and headwear sales, the monthly payment amount suggested by the government is reasonable, the court concluded.
An attorney for Billion International did not respond to a request for comment.
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