Long Beach, Calif. – According to the Department of Justice, Ghacham Inc., which operates under the brand name Platini, has been charged with multiple counts of conspiracy to pass false and fraudulent documents through a customhouse and conspiracy to engage in any transaction or dealing in properties of a specially designated narcotics trafficker.
From July 2011 to February 2021, the apparel company undervalued imported items by more than $32 million, and failed to pay almost $6.4 million in customs charges, according to officials.
According to the DOJ, this was directed by Mohamed Ghacham, a 38-year-old executive at the company, who had Chinese suppliers prepare two invoices for the clothing company: a legitimate one that reflected the actual price paid for the imported goods from China, and a fraudulent customs invoice that stated the undervalued price.
Officials claim that the corporation sent bogus invoices to U.S. Customs and Border Protection while keeping the legitimate invoices in its own accounting systems.
According to the DOJ, Ghacham has subsequently been charged with one count of conspiracy to carry false and fraudulent documents through a customs house.
Ghacham Inc. is also accused of doing business with Maria Tiburcia Cazarez Perez, a lady previously placed on the Specially Designated Narcotics Traffickers sanctions list due to her ties to the Sinaloa Cartel’s money laundering crimes.
According to the DOJ, she was sentenced to 15 years in federal prison for cocaine trafficking activities in San Diego and New York City.
Today, plea deals were submitted in federal court by Gracham Inc. and Mohamed Ghacham. On November 18, they are anticipated to make their initial court appearances. The corporation faces a maximum penalty of $10.5 million in fines and five years of probation if it enters a guilty plea, according to the DOJ.
According to the DOJ, as a condition of probation, Ghacham Inc. will be required to develop an effective anti-money laundering compliance and ethics program with an external compliance monitor.
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