LOS ANGELES (Legal Newsline) – Z Gallerie LLC will pay $15 million after allegations it conducted a scheme to evade customs duties on wooden bedroom imports from the People’s Republic of China, the Justice Department announced.

Divisions of the United States government assess and collect duties on imports in an effort to protect U.S. manufacturers from unfair competition abroad. Specifically, anti-dumping duties protect domestic manufacturers against foreign companies “dumping” products into the country at lower-than-market value.

According to the Justice Department’s claims, Z Gallerie evaded these duties by misclassifying imported furniture.

“Companies that intentionally mislabel shipments or misrepresent the value of goods being imported into the United States to avoid paying the appropriate duties do so in an attempt to create an unfair advantage over businesses that play by the rules,” Special Agent in Charge Nick S. Annan of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations (ICE HSI) in Atlanta said.

The Civil Division’s Commercial Litigation Branch, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Georgia, Customs and Border Protection and Homeland Security Investigations Atlanta handled the case.

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