Man gets 8 years in prison for selling fake Disney pins from China


Picture of bogus pins courtesy of the OC Weekly

Orange County District Attorney Press Release
For Immediate Release, Case # 11NF1191: March 6, 2013
Contacts: Susan Kang Schroeder, Chief of Staff, Office: 714-347-8408, Cell: 714-292-2718; Farrah Emami, Spokesperson, Office: 714-347-8405, Cell: 714-323-4486

MAN CONVICTED OF ILLEGALLY IMPORTING COUNTERFEIT DISNEY PINS FROM CHINA TO SELL OVER THE INTERNET

*Co-defendant was sentenced to one year in jail and three years formal probation

SANTA ANA – A man was convicted today for illegally importing counterfeit collectible Disney pins from China and selling them over the Internet. Larry James Allred, 58, Walnut, pleaded guilty to a court offer to one felony count of trademark infringement with sentencing enhancements for property loss over $200,000 and admitted a 1975 prior strike conviction for rape and a 1978 prior strike conviction for kidnapping and rape. He is expected to be sentenced to eight years in state prison and ordered to pay $201,000 restitution at his sentencing July 15, 2013, at 8:30 a.m. in Department C-49, Central Justice Center.

Larry James Allred

Larry James Allred

Co-defendant Robert Edward Smyrak, 54, Anaheim, pleaded guilty Sept. 29, 2011, to one felony count of trademark infringement. He was sentenced to one year in jail, three years of formal probation, and ordered to pay restitution.

Between January 2010 and April 2011, Allred worked with Smyrak in the fraudulent scheme by sending legitimate collectible Disney pins to a manufacturer in China to be replicated and shipped back to them. Allred and Smyrak sold the counterfeit pins over the Internet while passing them off as collectibles.

Robert Edward Smyrak

Robert Edward Smyrak

Smyrak and Allred sold nearly one million counterfeit items on Internet auction sites in bulk quantities averaging less than $1 per pin. The retail price of genuine Disney collectible pins range from $6.95 to $14.95.

The fraudulent operation was discovered in February 2011 when U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers and import specialists intercepted a parcel at Los Angeles International Airport addressed to Smyrak containing more than 150 pounds of counterfeit Disney pins.

Smyrak and Allred were arrested April 14, 2011, by the Anaheim Police Department (APD). At the time of their arrest, Smyrak and Allred were in possession of more than 91,000 counterfeit pins.

This case was investigated by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations and APD.

Deputy District Attorney Chuck Lawhorn of the White Collar Crime Team is prosecuting this case.

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Tony Rackauckas, District Attorney
401 Civic Center Drive West
Santa Ana, CA 92701

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