With files from Lynn Greiner
A Florida man has been arrested and charged for reselling fake Cisco networking equipment. The scam reportedly earned over US$100 million in revenue, of which millions went into the pockets of the conspirators. Cisco has said this kind of activity has gotten worse due to supply chain shortages.
The equipment, if priced fairly as authentic equipment, would have been valued at more than US$1 billion according to the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ).
The alleged fraudster, Onur (Ron) Aksoy, who is also known as Dave Durden, has run at least 19 companies headquartered in New Jersey and Florida. He has at least 15 Amazon storefronts and 10 eBay storefronts, as well as multiple other entities (which the DOJ refers to as, collectively, the “Pro Network Entities”). The DOJ’s press release provides a list.
Aksoy allegedly imported tens of thousands of counterfeit Cisco networking devices from China and Hong Kong. He reportedly resold the gear to unwitting U.S. and overseas customers claiming it was new and genuine Cisco equipment. The equipment had fake Cisco labels, packaging, and documentation.
US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) allegedly seized 180 shipments of counterfeit Cisco devices as they were being shipped to false companies operated by Aksoy.
Aksoy faces multiple charges of conspiracy to traffic in counterfeit goods and to commit mail and wire fraud. He is also charged with three counts of mail fraud, four counts of wire fraud and three counts of trafficking in counterfeit goods. The DOJ asks anyone who believes they were victims of the scam to visit the case’s website for more information.