Georgia Importer Convicted of Smuggling and Selling Grey Market Motorcycles
On March 24, Andrew Wright, president of SuperBike Racing, Inc. (SRI) was found guilty by a federal jury in Valdosta, GA of multiple felony charges related to the importation and sale of grey market high-end motorcycles under false pretenses. The motorcycles (three Ducatis and two MV Agustas), imported in 1999 and 2000 respectively, did not meet either DOT Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards (FMVSS) or EPA emission standards. Wright had declared at importation that the vehicles were not manufactured primarily for use on public roads (and thus not subject to FMVSS); he subsequently sold all the motorcycles for on-road use. Using a Registered Importer designation obtained from NHTSA, Wright also issued certification labels for the motorcycles indicating that they complied with FMVSS when he had not converted the vehicles to meet those standards. Wright was convicted on all nine counts (smuggling, false statements, mail fraud, and wire fraud) of an indictment filed in June 2005. A sentencing date has not yet been scheduled. The investigation was conducted jointly with the EPA-OIG and DHS-ICE, with assistance from NHTSA, DHS Customs and Border Patrol, and the EPA Office of Transportation and Air Quality.