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Contraband
08/01/2011

Miami couple and their company sentenced in a conspiracy to smuggle adulterated cheese

MIAMI — A husband and wife and their company were sentenced on Friday for conspiring to smuggle goods into the United States, following an investigation by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

Anneri Izurieta, 46, was sentenced to 30 months in prison, to be followed by an additional 10 months imprisonment because she committed some of the smuggling while on probation from a conviction for similar offenses. Her husband Yuri Izurieta, 41, was sentenced to 27 months in prison, and the couple's company, Naver Trading Corp., was sentenced to two years of probation.

According to the allegations in the indictment, Anneri was the president and director of Naver Trading, which is a licensed importer engaged in the importation and sale of dairy products.

Over several years, the Izurietas and Naver Trading repeatedly imported shipments of dairy products into the United States. These dairy products were released from the port into the custody of the Izurietas and Naver Trading, but the defendants were not authorized to sell and distribute the dairy products.

The indictment alleged that the defendants knew that the FDA was concerned that Naver Trading's dairy products were potentially contaminated with harmful bacteria. The indictment also alleged that, in some instances, the defendants actually knew that the dairy products were in fact contaminated. Nonetheless, the defendants allegedly failed to return the merchandise for destruction as required and, on some occasions, even sold and distributed their dairy products.