Internet Marketer Faces 10 Years for Selling Counterfeit Viagra, Cialis
HOUSTON — An Internet marketer faces up to 10 years in federal prison after a jury found him guilty of selling thousands of counterfeit Viagra and Cialis over the web.
Luis Garcia Torres, 41, of Patillas, Puerto Rico, was convicted at U.S. District Court in Houston on Friday of 12 counts of trafficking in counterfeit products.
Federal prosecutors presented evidence during the four-day trial that Garcia sold bogus Viagra and Cialis pills online for about $2 a piece.
The agents purchased about 3,600 Viagra and Cialis tablets from Torres via the Internet from January 2010 through August 2010. Later, the pharmaceuticals were determined counterfeit by trademark holders Pfizer Pharmaceuticals and Eli Lilly, as well as the FDA.
Agents also obtained a search warrant for the email address used by Torres, where they found that he had obtained counterfeit pharmaceuticals from China and discussed in emails to partners about techniques to evade detection and seizure by law enforcement officials.
The jury convicted Torres of one felony count of conspiring to traffic in counterfeit goods, six felony counts of trafficking in counterfeit goods, three misdemeanor counts of causing the introduction into interstate commerce of drugs that are misbranded and two misdemeanor counts of trademark counterfeiting.
Garcia also faces a possible $2 million fine at his Aug. 30 sentencing. He is free on bond.