LAWFUEL – Press Release Service – A Gardena man was arrested today on federal criminal charges of selling counterfeit Viagra, Cialis and Levitra that he purchased from counterfeiters in China.
Masaru Yamasato, 44, was arrested today following an investigation conducted by the United States Food and Drug Administration – Office of Criminal Investigations. Yamasato was charged in a criminal complaint with trafficking in counterfeit goods and sale of counterfeit drugs.
This investigation began on October 31, 2005, when officers with the United States Customs and Border Protection examined a package that was being shipped from China to Yamasato. The package was labeled “samples of plastic,” but when officers examined it, they found pills that bore markings suggesting that they were Viagra, Cialis and Levitra pills. Subsequent laboratory testing confirmed, however, that they were counterfeit.
On February 2, 2006, special agents with FDA-OCI interviewed Yamasato at his residence. According to the criminal complaint, during the interview, Yamasato acknowledged that he and a partner purchased the drugs over the Internet from a source in China. The counterfeit drugs were then sold to a customer, who in turn sold the counterfeit drugs to individuals throughout Asia. Yamasato also voluntarily provided agents with documents showing that he purchased the counterfeit drugs from a source in China, Cherry Wong, who, according to the complaint, is a major supplier of counterfeit pharmaceuticals.