The Department of Defense (DoD) has found a California man guilty of defrauding the Defense Logistics Agency (DLA) for $3.5m by selling counterfeit fans.

The ruling came after the defendant Steve H.S. Kim, 63, of Alameda County, was found to have fraudulently sold $3.5 million of faulty and stolen items.

Faulty fans defraud the DLA

Nicole M. Argentieri, the Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General said

“The defendant sold counterfeit and deficient fan assemblies for use in military systems to increase his profit.”

“Criminals who cheat the U.S. military by selling deficient or counterfeit goods put our national security at risk. This case demonstrates the Justice Department’s commitment to protecting the military supply chain and Americans’ security,” the Head of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division would conclude.

Kim created counterfeit labels and gave the DLA fake tracking identification numbers. He pleaded guilty to one count of wire fraud and selling illicit goods. Kim also signed false documents of origin for the costly parts and when questioned about their origin gave false information.

U.S. Attorney Ismail Ramsey for the Northern District of California said “Swindling our military is a sure way to find oneself in jail. This office is always on the lookout for fraudsters and will prosecute anyone caught cheating our military by providing products that endanger our service people or compromise our readiness.”

The massive penalty he could face for the $3.5 million he stole from the DoD could wind up costing the Californian twenty and ten years for each charge respectively. The severity of this crime isn’t just in the price tag to the American tax payer, but these illegal and faulty items were intended to be used in a nuclear submarine, a surface-to-air missile system and a laser used on a U.S. naval aircraft.

Special Agent in Charge Keith K. Kelly said:

“Our Army communities and the public can rest assured that we are committed to pursuing anyone that would defraud the U.S. government for their own personal gain and put combat readiness at risk.”

“Supplying counterfeit products to the DoD endangers the mission and betrays the public’s trust. This investigation demonstrates DCIS’ ongoing commitment to working with its law enforcement partners to hold individuals who defraud the DoD accountable,” DCIS Western Field Office’s Special Agent in Charge Bryan D. Denny would contribute.

Image: Ideogram.

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