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September 9, 2013Fresno, CA, United StatesIntellectual Property Rights and Commercial Fraud

Fresno man sentenced for selling counterfeit video and audio DVDs

FRESNO, Calif. — A Fresno man was sentenced Monday to 2 1/2 years in prison for selling counterfeit video and music DVDs and CDs, following a probe by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI).

Jose Eduardo Jeronimo, 24, pleaded guilty in June to conspiracy to commit criminal copyright infringement and traffic in counterfeit labels and counterfeit documentation and packaging. The sentence was handed down by Senior U.S. District Judge Anthony W. Ishii.

According to court documents, from July to Sept. 18, 2012, Jeronimo was involved in an extensive scheme with other co-conspirators to store and distribute thousands of counterfeit DVD movies and audio CDs. Jeronimo sold the items from his residence, including some movies that had not yet been commercially distributed.

"Consumers need to remember, the sale of counterfeit items like these is not a victimless crime," said Mike Prado, resident agent in charge of HSI Fresno. "Counterfeiting robs Americans of jobs, stifles American innovation and promotes crime. The bottom line is, counterfeiters profit at the expense of American businesses and American workers."

Assistant U.S. Attorneys Grant B. Rabenn and Henry Z. Carbajal III prosecuted the case.