Chinese surveillance goods illegally sold to US: Federal prosecutors
Nov 10 2019
A NY company has been charged with illegally importing and selling Chinese-made surveillance and security equipment to USA government agencies and private customers.
Employees at Aventura Technologies Inc.in Commack, are expected to be charged in a federal indictment for illegally importing the equipment.
Six of those charged were arrested Thursday and are scheduled to appear in federal court in Brooklyn.
U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District Richard P. Donoghue said the Chinese-manufactured equipment included network surveillance cameras that were imported into the U.S. through Kennedy Airport in Queens in 1,000 shipments from China since 2010. Check back to Daily Voice for updates.
Among the Chinese language-made cameras Aventura offered to the army are recognized to have "vulnerabilities that could allow a hacker to remotely assume control of a networked camera and obtain sensitive data", the felony criticism alleges. Because of Cabasso's use of shell companies, real estate transactions on behalf of third-party beneficiaries, and other money laundering techniques aimed at obfuscation and concealment, the government does not have a comprehensive understanding of the nature and location of all Cabasso's financial assets, the paper said.
"The defendants falsely claimed for years that their surveillance and security equipment was manufactured on Long Island, padding their pockets with money from lucrative contracts without regard for the risk to our country's national security posed by secretly peddling made-in-China electronics with known cyber vulnerabilities", said Richard P. Donoghue, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of NY. Now seven current and former employees are facing charges. "In fact, Aventura does not manufacture anything in the United States". SIA members supply security practitioners with robust security solutions that protect people, sensitive data and networks, physical structures, proprietary information, and vital US national security interests.
The authorities are in the process of removing the equipment from government facilities, Mr. Donoghue said.
Jonathan Larsen, IRS-CI special agent-in-charge, said that the implications of Aventura's conduct have gone "go beyond shameless attempts at personal enrichment".
In a memo seeking to detain Mr. Cabasso in custody until trial, prosecutors portrayed him as a serial con man with a long criminal history. Authorities also seized bank accounts and a yacht bought with money made through the fraud.
The pair allegedly lied about the arrangement to gain access to government contracts reserved for women-owned businesses.
The defendants had gone to lengths to hide any footprint of the products Chinese origin, prosecutors said, including requiring a Chinese supplier to erase its initials from the product's circuit board.
Mr. Cabasso was so brazen, according to a criminal complaint, that he emailed a government representative in 2016 to accuse other American contractors of selling surveillance products that were made in China.