Owner of Maryland Export Business Pleads Guilty to Federal Charges of Attempt to Smuggle Items Out of the United States Without the Required Export Permit | USAO-MD
Baltimore, Md. – Jorge Orencel, 65, of Silver Spring, Md., Pleaded guilty today to federal charges of attempting to remove goods from the United States without the required export license. Orencel owned and operated Sumtech, an export company located in Fulton, Maryland.
The guilty plea was announced by United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Erek L. Barron; Special Agents in charge Jonathan Carson and Nasir Khan of the US Department of Commerce, Bureau of Industry Security, Office of Export Enforcement, New York and Washington Field Offices, respectively.
According to his guilty plea, Orencel owned and operated Sumtech, which advertised itself on the Internet as specializing in the distribution of American goods, including “high-tech laboratory devices”, to South America, Asia and the Middle East. East.
As detailed in the plea agreement, in October 2016, Orencel began communicating with Co-conspirator 1, a person posing as an employee of a company in Hong Kong, regarding Co-conspirator 1’s desire to buy. five ionization chambers and one fission chamber at Company A, which manufactured gas-filled nuclear radiation detectors. Co-Conspirator 1 indicated that New York-based Company A needed an end-user declaration and export license if they knew the goods needed to be shipped to other countries , and suggested to Orencel not to mention that the goods would be shipped to other countries. Hong Kong. Orencel agreed and obtained a quote from Company A for the item prices requested by Co-Conspirator 1, falsely telling Company A officials that the request was from a customer in Argentina, South America.
After contacting Co-conspirator 1, on October 26, 2016, Orencel sent a Sumtech purchase order to Company A for the ionization chambers and the fission chamber, along with an end user statement on paper. on Sumtech letterhead and a declaration by ultimate consignee and purchaser, which incorrectly stated that the end user and final destination was a business in Argentina. On February 7, 2017, Orencel emailed Co-Conspirator 1 that he had received the ionization chambers but not the fission chamber. Orencel said that although Company A indicated that the fission chamber was regulated because it contained nuclear material, Orencel had obtained a ruling from the Nuclear Regulatory Commission that the item was not banned from being released. export due to the small amount of nuclear material contained in the chamber. . The next day, Orencel emailed Co-Conspirator 1 informing them that Company A had not built the fission chamber and would not do so until Orencel agreed to have the fission chamber or transported via UPS SCS, a shipping service provided by United Parcel. Service (UPS) that would pick up an item directly from the seller, such as Company A, and ship it directly to the user. Orencel told Co-Conspirator 1, “He’s a very difficult supplier… looks like they’re a little suspicious and of course we didn’t say the unit is for Hong Kong. “
As detailed in the plea agreement, on February 24, 2017, law enforcement officers from the Department of Commerce, Bureau of Industry Security, Office of Export Enforcement visited Orencel in Sumtech. Officers provided Orencel with copies of the reference documents regarding export rules and regulations and reviewed the documents with Orencel. Orencel told officers he is very familiar with US export laws and that his company always obtains export licenses when needed.
Shortly after this visit, on March 3, 2017, Orencel shipped the ionization chambers to an address in Hong Kong, despite statements to Company A that the items were destined for Argentina and would not be re-exported.
On August 22, 2017, shortly after Company A informed Orencel that the fission chamber was complete and ready to be collected by UPS for shipment to the end user, Orencel executed a letter of instruction from the shipper falsely certifying that the fission chamber was detection equipment valued at $ 930 and the final recipient and destination was in Argentina. In fact, Orencel knew that the fission chamber was valued at $ 9,300 and that he planned to export the item to Hong Kong. If Orencel had correctly stated the value of the item, which was over $ 2,500, he would have been required to file an export declaration from the shipper, who, in turn, would have alerted the Department of Commerce and d other authorities of the existence of the consignment. and enabled them to track the export and confirm compliance with licenses and other export requirements.
On August 25, 2017, Orencel emailed Co-Conspirator 1 stating that UPS had recovered the fission chamber from Company A and discussed how to ship the item to Hong Kong, as the documents were issued with the name of a fake end user. Co-Conspirator 1 suggested contacting a freight forwarder in California who had previously helped in a similar situation. Orencel said he was trying to convince the shipper in New York to move the package to Maryland so that he could pick it up and export it to Co-conspirator 1. Law enforcement officials have detained the package at the UPS facility in New York City before it can be shipped further.
Orencel admitted to law enforcement during a voluntary interview on October 30, 2017, that he had never intended to ship the fission chamber to Argentina and that he had only indicated that the ‘Argentina as the final destination to convince Company A to release the fission chamber for shipment. Additionally, Orencel said it plans to contact UPS after recovering Company A’s fission chamber and order UPS to change the delivery address in Hong Kong. Orencel admitted that he also knew he was required to file a shipper’s export declaration and export information into the automated export system, since the value of the fission chamber was over $ 2,500.
Orencel faces a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison for attempted smuggling of goods. U.S. District Judge George L. Russell, III set the sentence February 22, 2022 at 9:30 a.m.
United States Attorney Erek L. Barron commended the United States Department of Commerce, Bureau of Industry Security, Office of Export Enforcement for their work in the investigation. Mr Barron thanked Deputy US Prosecutors Kathleen O. Gavin and Abigail Ticse, who are pursuing the case.
For more information on the Maryland US Attorney’s Office, its priorities, and the resources available to help the community, please visit www.justice.gov/usao-md and https://www.justice.gov/usao-md/community -outreach.
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