MN man indicted in counterfeit jersey scheme

MINNEAPOLIS - A Twin Cities man is under indictment for his alleged involvement in counterfeit jersey scheme that claimed hundreds of unsuspecting victims.

The United States Attorney's Office announced Monday that a federal grand jury recently indicted 45-year-old Brian Todd Gore of Inver Grove Heights on charges of conspiracy and trafficking in counterfeit goods. Gore made his initial appearance on July 11, 2014 before U.S. Magistrate Judge Jeanne J. Graham.

Prosecutors say that from November 2009 through September 2012, Gore conspired with other individuals to traffic in counterfeit sports jerseys imported from China. As part of the alleged conspiracy the indictment says Gore would order the counterfeit sports jerseys from suppliers in China, have them delivered to him in the United States, and then sell them to a man called Co-conspirator A. This was done with the knowledge that the counterfeit jerseys would be sold to the public.

During this time Co-conspirator A possessed hundreds of counterfeit sportswear items in his retail store in Roseville, some of which he had purchased from Gore. The indictment further alleges that the Gore transported hundreds of counterfeit jerseys in his van and stored counterfeit jerseys at his residence in Inver Grove Heights and in a leased storage unit in Des Moines, Iowa.

Authorities say that In February 2010, the defendant traveled to Miami, which was hosting the 2010 NFL Super Bowl, so he could sell counterfeit NFL jerseys. During that time prosecutors say Gore possessed approximately 383 counterfeit NFL jerseys and two DHL shipping receipts showing packages sent from China to Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

"Trafficking in counterfeit goods is not a victimless crime," said Special Agent in Charge J. Michael Netherland of Homeland Security Investigations in St. Paul. "Buying these items may appear at first to be a bargain, but when we take into account how the money it generates is often tied to organized crime or worse, we see that this 'victimless crime' harms us all in the long run."

If convicted, Gore faces a potential maximum penalty of 10 years in prison and a $2 million fine.


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