March 4, 2011: Husband, Wife, and Corporation Charged in a Conspiracy to Smuggle Adulterated Cheese
Food and Drug Administration
Office of Criminal Investigations
U.S. Department of Justice Press Release
For Immediate Release
March 4, 2011
United States Attorney
Southern District of Florida
Contact: Alicia Valle
Phone: (305) 961-9153
Wifredo A. Ferrer, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, Anthony V. Mangione, Special Agent in Charge, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations, Miami Field Office, and David Bourne, Special Agent in Charge, U.S. Food and Drug Administration, Office of Criminal Investigation, announced the indictment of defendants Yuri Izurieta, 41, of Miami, Anneri Izurieta, 46, of Miami, and Naver Trading, Corp., a Miami-based company on one charge of conspiracy to smuggle goods into the United States, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 371, and six counts of smuggling goods into the United States, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 545. If convicted, the defendants face a maximum of five years' imprisonment for the count of count of conspiracy, and a maximum of twenty years' imprisonment for each count of smuggling. The defendants made their initial appearances in federal court today before U.S. Magistrate Judge Barry L. Garber.
According to the allegations in the indictment, Anneri Izurieta was the President and Director of Naver Trading, Corp., which is a licensed importer engaged in the importation and sale of dairy products. Yuri Izurieta is the husband of Anneri Izurieta. Over several years, the Izurietas and Naver Trading, Corp. repeatedly imported shipments of dairy products into the United States. These dairy products were released from the port into the custody of the Izurietas and Naver Trading, Corp., but the defendants were not authorized to sell and distribute the dairy products pending successful completion of an examination by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
The indictment alleges that the defendants knew that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration was concerned that Naver Trading, Corp.'s dairy products were potentially contaminated with harmful bacteria. The indictment also alleges that, in some instances, the defendants actually knew that the dairy products were in fact contaminated. Nonetheless, the defendants allegedly failed to return the merchandise for destruction as required and, on some occasions, even sold and distributed their dairy products.
Mr. Ferrer commended investigative efforts of the ICE's Homeland Security Investigations in Miami and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration Office of Criminal Investigation. This case is being handled by Assistant U.S. Attorney Jaime Raich.
An indictment is merely an accusation and a defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.
A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the United States Attorney's Office for the Southern District of Florida at www.usdoj.gov/usao/fls. Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Southern District of Florida at www.flsd.uscourts.gov or on http://pacer.flsd.uscourts.gov.