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Originally published Thursday, February 19, 2009 at 12:00 AM

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Importer guilty in $2.1M counterfeit case

Bryan A. Polee faces up to 10 years in prison when he is sentenced for importing counterfeit goods from China — everything from exercise units to blenders and sex aids — and selling $2.1 million worth of the items on eBay, federal investigators say.

Seattle Times staff reporter

For three years Bryan A. Polee, 28, imported counterfeit goods from China — Bowflex exercise units, Magic Bullet blenders, sex aids — and sold $2.1 million worth of them to unsuspecting consumers on eBay, federal investigators say.

He imported the phony products from a single supplier in China through his Oak Harbor-based company, ZMP Enterprises, and had them labeled with names of such legitimate manufacturers as Nautilus and Fitness Quest.

Polee, who now lives in California, pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court in Seattle on Wednesday to participating in the scheme. He faces up to 10 years in prison and a $2 million fine when he is sentenced May 15.

"During these challenging economic times, this case serves as a reminder that enforcement of our nation's counterfeiting laws is about protecting the rights and economic interests of those who play by the rules and justly penalizing those who seek to turn a personal profit through the illegal sale of fraudulent products," said Leigh Winchell, Special Agent in Charge of Investigations for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).

Investigators began the investigation in April when Polee's final shipment, worth some $760,000, was seized at the Port of Tacoma.

Investigators seized more than nine containers of counterfeit goods. Officials say all the items will be destroyed.

As part of his plea agreement, Polee will forfeit to the government $30,000 in cash, a 2003 Cadillac CTS and a 2000 Jaguar S-Type.

On his MySpace page, which he's not logged into since 2006, he lists his occupation as president of ZMP and his income as between $60,000 and $75,000.

Lornet Turnbull: 206-464-2420 or lturnbull@seattletimes.com

Copyright © 2009 The Seattle Times Company

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