The U.S. Attorney's Office has charged a Forks Township man with conspiring to sell counterfeit auto parts, according to a press release.
Richard Dininni was one of three people arrested at their homes Tuesday morning after unsealed indictments in Manhattan federal court alleged his involvement as an automotive parts supplier in selling counterfeit parts such as brake pads and water pumps.
Dininni was expected to be arraigned in federal court in Allentown. The alleged sales took place between November 2011 and June 2012 from Dininni's Professional Parts USA operation, the release states.
Along with his co-conspirators, Dininni deceptively packaged and caused to be packaged certain aftermarket automotive parts to falsely make it appear as though these parts had been manufactured, the U.S. Attorney's Office states.
Dininni and his co-conspirators then sold these parts to individuals and entities that they understood would re-sell them to the general public and to certain automotive repair shops, including repair shops that service New York City’s taxis and limousines, the press release adds.
"As alleged, these defendants sold the automobile replacement parts equivalent of designer knock-offs, but represented to their unsuspecting customers that they were buying the 'name brand,'" Manhattan U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara said.
Bharara added that while the replacement parts may have been no different from many other generic parts sold every day, "they were able to command the same higher prices charged by the automobile manufacturers whose names they stole."