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Importer to Pay Civil Penalty, Post Bond on Vehicles and Engines from China

Monday, March 31, 2014
Sandler, Travis & Rosenberg Trade Report

The Environmental Protection Agency announced March 27 that a California-based vehicle and engine importer will pay $630,000 in civil penalties after illegally importing and selling nearly 28,000 highway motorcycles, recreational vehicles and engines manufactured in China that did not comply with Clean Air Act standards to limit harmful pollution. The company will also post a $300,000-$500,000 bond to satisfy any future potential penalties related to importations of certain model year 2014, 2015 and 2016 vehicles. The EPA states that this is the first time it has secured such a bond in a CAA settlement.

According to an EPA press release, the company was charged with importing and selling over 6,700 highway motorcycles, RVs and engines that lack the required certification that their emissions meet federal standards. The EPA also alleged that the company failed to provide purchasers with the full emissions warranty required by the CAA, imported and sold vehicles without proper emission labels, and failed to follow recordkeeping requirements.

Further, the EPA’s investigation showed that the company obtained certificates of conformity for numerous vehicles without conducting required emissions testing. In October 2013 the agency voided 45 invalid certificates of conformity held by the company, which affected over 21,000 additional model year 2006-2011 highway motorcycles and RVs.

The press release notes that the EPA and U.S. Customs and Border Protection discovered the violations through inspections conducted at the Dallas/Fort Worth service port and the Los Angeles/Long Beach seaport as well as a comprehensive review of documents provided by the company.

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