Alexandria man, seven others, sentenced for selling counterfeit pro sports jerseysEight people – including one from Alexandria – were sentenced for trafficking counterfeit goods, including NFL and NHL jerseys as well as Nike sportswear.
By: Staff Report , Alexandria Echo Press
Eight people – including one from Alexandria – were sentenced for trafficking counterfeit goods, including NFL and NHL jerseys as well as Nike sportswear.
The sentencing took place today, Monday, in federal court in Fergus Falls. U.S. District Court Judge John R. Tunheim sentenced all eight on one count of trafficking in counterfeit goods. The suspects included:
Charles Freddie Thompson, 41, of Long Prairie, was sentenced to 12 months and one day in federal prison and ordered to pay $181,673 in restitution.
Patricia Ann Thompson (his wife), 39, of Long Prairie, was sentenced to five years of probation and ordered to pay $13,047 in restitution.
Darrell Leroy Thompson (Charles Thompson’s father), 68, of Long Prairie, was sentenced to three years of probation and ordered to pay $8,275 in restitution.
William Clifford Bakken, 67, of Plymouth, was sentenced to three years of probation and ordered to pay $5,403 in restitution.
Robert Anthony Ingebretson, 50, of Alexandria, was sentenced to three years of probation and ordered to pay $4,662 in restitution.
Frederick Allen Degerstrom, 34, of Duluth, was sentenced to five years of probation and ordered to pay $10,092 in restitution.
James William Braun, Jr., 42, of Milaca, was sentenced to three years of probation and ordered to pay $3,125 in restitution.
Christpher Walter Ashmore, 39, of Bemidji, was sentenced to six months in federal prison and ordered to pay $26,482 in restitution.
Ashmore was convicted on January 20, 2011, while the other seven pleaded guilty.
In their plea agreements, defendants admitted that from September of 2007 through December of 2009, they conspired to traffic in counterfeit trademarked sports apparel.
Charles Thompson ordered the counterfeit apparel from his suppliers in China and elsewhere and had the items shipped to his residence as well as to other residences. He also had an agreement with Bakken, Ingebretson, and others to purchase the counterfeit apparel, knowing it would be resold for a profit, according to prosecutors.
In addition, Charles Thompson recruited others to help him wire money to China for payment of the counterfeit goods.
One of those recruited was his wife, who admittedly wired money to China for payment of counterfeit sportswear on 21 occasions between January 22, 2008, and July 10, 2009, totaling $51,975.
In addition, on November 23, 2009, she accepted delivery at her residence of 11 parcels from China, containing a total of 133 counterfeit NFL jerseys.
In his plea agreement, Ingebretson admitted participating in the conspiracy from December of 2008 through December of 2009. In addition, he admitted that 123 counterfeit NFL jerseys, 13 counterfeit NHL jerseys, and four counterfeit NFL T-shirts were seized at his Alexandria-based store, Sportsminded, on December 1, 2009.
Following the sentencings, Mike Feinberg, special agent in charge of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations (ICE HSI) in Bloomington, said, “The creation, smuggling and sale of counterfeit goods are not victimless crimes. Products that are produced and sold illegally are a threat to the health and safety of the public, harm trademark holders, are distributed by organized crime groups and are then sold to the detriment of local businesses and communities who derive no financial gain from illegal sales. ICE HSI is committed to an aggressive approach toward enforcing the nation’s intellectual property rights laws.”