December 21, 2010
SEATTLE (AP) — A 70-year-old Washington state man has been sentenced to a year in prison followed by six months of home detention after admitting the honey he imported was from China — not Thailand or the Philippines, as he claimed.
Chung Po Liu of Bellevue also must pay $400,000 in restitution.
Federal prosecutors in Seattle say Liu avoided paying nearly $3 million in import fees on Chinese honey by claiming it came from elsewhere. One shipment was contaminated with an antibiotic banned from U.S. foods.
The U.S. attorney's office in Seattle says the $400,000 in restitution represents double his profits from 2005 to 2008.
Liu imported the honey through his companies, Rainier Cascade and Evergreen Produce.