US Law Agency Cracks Fake Cisco Hardware Ring

The FBI has announced that it has successfully concluded an investigation into fake Cisco networking hardware.

The investigation has resulted in 30 convictions and a recovery of $143 million (£97 million) in equipment.

According to a statement released by the FBI, the investigation, carried out in collaboration with US Customs and Border Protection (CPB), looked into certain Chinese computer networking hardware being branded and sold as Cisco merchandise.

John Morton, assistant secretary of Homeland Security for Immigration and Customs Enforcement said: “These cases involve greedy businessmen hocking counterfeit and substandard hardware to any buyer, whether it could affect the health and safety of others in a hospital setting or the security of our troops on the battlefield.”

During the investigation the agency seized 94,000 fake Cisco networking hardware from various individuals posing as Cisco sales agents attempting to sell the fake hardware to US government agencies.

One of the convicted, Saudi national Ehab Ashoor, was sentenced to 51 months in prison in the Southern District of Texas and was also fined $119,400 (£81,000) by the courts.