Shipper pleads guilty for violating ‘Buy America’ policy
The U.S. Agency for International Development’s Office of Inspector General said Monday a California-based shipper pleaded guilty Feb. 9 to circumventing the country’s “Buy America” policy in supplying components for a U.S. foreign assistance program.
The shipper, Lei Jack Chen, former president of Jackmoon USA, admitted to the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California that he aided and abetted other employees in the removal of “Made in China” labels from parts and packaging for shipments of components used to support a USAID telecommunications project in Egypt and replacing them with “Made in USA” designations. Chen is also alleged to have destroyed invoices and other papers associated with the parts.
Chen’s guilty plea is part of a two-year investigation by USAID’s Office of Inspector General. He is scheduled for sentencing May 3.
The “Buy America” provision is congressionally mandated for components used in U.S. foreign assistance programs. “We have, and will continue to take enforcement of this provision very seriously,” said USAID Inspector General Everett L. Mosley in a statement.