If you are looking for EIA UK, it's overhere.

Lumber Liquidators Admits Guilt in Smuggling Illegal Timber, Agrees to Clean Up Supply Chain

NORFOLK, VIRGINIA— Today, legal representatives of Lumber Liquidators Inc. (LL) appeared in the Eastern District Court of Virginia to plead guilty to four misdemeanor counts for violations of the Lacey Act and one felony count of entry of goods by means of false statement. The judge presiding in the case accepted the guilty plea, and confirmed with both government and company representatives the facts in the plea agreement.

The plea agreement, released October 7, states that Lumber Liquidators Inc. agreed to pay more than $13 million in fines and be placed on a five-year probationary period while it implements a Lacey Act Compliance Plan. The plea agreement notes that the facts it contains “do not represent the entirety of the government’s evidence against the defendant.” A sentencing hearing is scheduled to take place on February 1, 2016.

“This case marks a critical turning point in efforts to transform the global timber supply chain, showing unequivocally the United States will no longer traffic in stolen goods,” said Kate Horner, Director of Forest Campaigns for the DC-based Environmental Investigation Agency. “Lumber Liquidators will not only pay for its past misdeeds with a hefty fine, the company will be forced to fundamentally transform their business model and sourcing practices to forgo cheap, illegal products that decimate the forests of the world as its implements a mandatory new, rigorous compliance plan.”

The DOJ initiated a federal investigation of the Lumber Liquidators’ wood sourcing practices in September 2013. In October 2013, the Environmental Investigation Agency’s (EIA) investigative report, Liquidating the Forests, revealed that the company had sourced illegal timber from the Russian Far East through its Chinese suppliers, ultimately selling it to unwitting consumers across the United States. Although Lumber Liquidators spokespeople denied any wrongdoing for the past two years, evidence made public in EIA’s investigative report, which showed serious illegalities in Lumber Liquidators hardwood flooring supply chains, was confirmed in the plea agreement. The DOJ also confirmed the findings of EIA investigators that Lumber Liquidators must have had knowledge of illegal practices such as overharvesting and falsified declarations at the time they increased their purchases from the respective Chinese suppliers.

Lumber Liquidators is the largest hardwood flooring retailer in the United States. The company’s plea agreement marks the first time a major corporation has been found guilty of violations of the US Lacey Act, which was amended in 2008 to include a prohibition on trade in illegally sourced and traded plant products.

###

Contact:
Maggie Dewane, Press Officer, mdewane@eia-global.org, +1 (202) 483-6621

View all Press Releases

Recent Blog Posts

South Korea Says "아니요" (No) to Illegal Timber
11/08/2018
South Korea has joined the ranks of countries prohibiting the import of illegal timber.
Not One More: Another Activist Silenced by Arrest in Madagascar
06/07/2018
Christopher Magnenjiky was arrested for obscure and unjust reasons mid-May 2018

Recent Reports

New legal risks for Japanese timber sourcing from Eastern Europe
09/28/2018
Eastern Europe’s Carpathian Mountains may seem remote for most Japanese, but lumber stolen from these ancient forests permeates Japan’s housebuilding sector. New reports from Romania and Ukraine reveal the extent of illegal logging, corruption, and bribery practiced by some of Europe’s largest wood processors.
東欧から日本への木材調達に 新しい法的リスク
09/28/2018
東欧のカルパチア山脈は、日本人にとって縁遠いところに思われるかもしれないが、その太古の から盗伐された木材が日本の住宅産業のあらゆるところで使われている。ルーマニアおよびウクライナからの新しい報告で欧州最大手の木材加工業者による広範囲な違法伐採、腐敗、贈賄行為について明らかになった。

Recent Press Releases

Global Wildlife Treaty Bans Massive Illegal Timber Trade from Nigeria
11/01/2018
The Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA) commends the trade suspension on rosewood from Nigeria, agreed upon by the governing body of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES Standing Committee) at its meeting in Sochi and effective as of October 8, 2018.
Livestream: Defend the Defenders
10/24/2018
Musicians from Maroon 5, Dave Matthews Band and Guster Join Peruvian Indigenous Leaders, Advocate End to Illegal Deforestation of the Amazon Rainforest

Recent Videos

The 'S' Files
02/16/2017
EIA's series of videos exposing Holzindustrie Schweighofer's involvement in illegal logging in Romania,
The 'S' Files, Case #3: Depot Deception
12/21/2016
The latest in EIA's video series, The 'S' Files, Depot Deception shows that Holzindustrie Schweighofer, one of the largest timber companies in Europe, appears to be systematically...
Follow us @eiaenvironment on twitter for the latest updates!