Bureau of Customs and Border Protection, Department of Homeland Security.
This document notifies the public of foreign entities which have been issued a penalty claim under section 592 of the Tariff Act of 1930, for certain violations of the customs laws. This list is authorized to be published by section 333 of the Uruguay Round Agreements Act.
This document notifies the public of the semiannual list for the 6-month period starting March 31, 2004, and ending September 30, 2004.Start Further Info
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION:
For information regarding any of the operational aspects, contact Gregory Olsavsky, Fines, Penalties and Forfeitures Branch, Office of Field Operations, (202) 927-3119. For information regarding any of the legal aspects, contact Willem A. Daman, Office of Chief Counsel, (202) 927-6900.End Further Info End Preamble Start Supplemental Information
Section 333 of the Uruguay Round Agreements Act (URAA) (Pub. L. 103-465, 108 Stat. 4809) (signed December 8, 1994), entitled Textile Transshipments, amended part V of title IV of the Tariff Act of 1930 by creating a section 592A (19 U.S.C. 1592a), which authorizes the Secretary of the Treasury to publish in the Federal Register, on a semiannual basis, a list of the names of any producers, manufacturers, suppliers, sellers, exporters, or other persons located outside the Customs territory of the United States, when these entities and/or persons have been issued a penalty claim under section 592 of the Tariff Act, for certain violations of the customs laws, provided that certain conditions are satisfied.
The violations of the customs laws referred to above are the following: (1) Using documentation, or providing documentation subsequently used by the importer of record, which indicates a false or fraudulent country of origin or source of textile or apparel products; (2) Using counterfeit visas, licenses, permits, bills of lading, or similar documentation, or providing counterfeit visas, licenses, permits, bills of lading, or similar documentation that are subsequently used by the importer of record, with respect to the entry into the Customs territory of the United States of textile or apparel products; (3) Manufacturing, producing, supplying, or selling textile or apparel products which are falsely or fraudulently labeled as to country of origin or source; and (4) Engaging in practices which aid or abet the transshipment, through a country other than the country of origin, of textile or apparel products in a manner which conceals the true origin of the textile or apparel products or permits the evasion of quotas on, or voluntary restraint agreements with respect to, imports of textile or apparel products.
If a penalty claim has been issued with respect to any of the above violations, and no petition in response to the claim has been filed, the name of the party to whom the penalty claim was issued will appear on the list. If a petition or supplemental petition for relief from the penalty claim is submitted under 19 U.S.C. 1618, in accord with the time periods established by §§ 171.2 and 171.61, Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Regulations (19 CFR 171.2, 171.61) and the petition is subsequently denied or the penalty is mitigated, and no further petition, if allowed, is received within 60 days of the denial or allowance of mitigation, then the administrative action shall be Start Printed Page 26616deemed to be final and administrative remedies will be deemed to be exhausted. Consequently, the name of the party to whom the penalty claim was issued will appear on the list. However, provision is made for an appeal to the Secretary of the Treasury (now delegated to the Secretary of Homeland Security) by the person named on the list, for the removal of its name from the list. If the Secretary finds that such person or entity has not committed any of the enumerated violations for a period of not less than 3 years after the date on which the person or entity's name was published, the name will be removed from the list as of the next publication of the list.
Reasonable Care Required
Section 592A also requires any importer of record entering, introducing, or attempting to introduce into the commerce of the United States textile or apparel products that were either directly or indirectly produced, manufactured, supplied, sold, exported, or transported by such named person to show, to the satisfaction of the Secretary, that such importer has exercised reasonable care to ensure that the textile or apparel products are accompanied by documentation, packaging, and labeling that are accurate as to their origin. Reliance solely upon information regarding the imported product from a person named on the list is clearly not the exercise of reasonable care. Thus, the textile and apparel importers who have some commercial relationship with one or more of the listed parties must exercise a degree of reasonable care in ensuring that the documentation covering the imported merchandise, as well as its packaging and labeling, is accurate as to the country of origin of the merchandise. This degree of reasonable care must involve reliance on more than information supplied by the named party.
In meeting the reasonable care standard when importing textile or apparel products and when dealing with a party named on the list published pursuant to section 592A of the Tariff Act of 1930, an importer should consider the following questions in attempting to ensure that the documentation, packaging, and labeling are accurate as to the country of origin of the imported merchandise. The list of questions is not exhaustive but is illustrative.
(1) Has the importer had a prior relationship with the named party?
(2) Has the importer had any detentions and/or seizures of textile or apparel products that were directly or indirectly produced, supplied, or transported by the named party?
(3) Has the importer visited the company's premises and ascertained that the company has the capacity to produce the merchandise?
(4) Where a claim of an origin conferring process is made in accordance with 19 CFR 102.21, has the importer ascertained that the named party actually performed the required process?
(5) Is the named party operating from the same country as is represented by that party on the documentation, packaging or labeling?
(6) Have quotas for the imported merchandise closed or are they nearing closing from the main producer countries for this commodity?
(7) What is the history of this country regarding this commodity?
(8) Have you asked questions of your supplier regarding the origin of the product?
(9) Where the importation is accompanied by a visa, permit, or license, has the importer verified with the supplier or manufacturer that the visa, permit, and/or license is both valid and accurate as to its origin? Has the importer scrutinized the visa, permit or license as to any irregularities that would call its authenticity into question?
The law authorizes a semiannual publication of the names of the foreign entities and/or persons. On October 8, 2003, CBP published a notice in the Federal Register (68 FR 58123) which identified two (2) entities which fell within the purview of section 592A of the Tariff Act of 1930.
For the period ending March 30, 2004, CBP has identified no foreign entities that fall within the purview of section 592A of the Tariff Act of 1930. The two (2) entities named on the list published on October 8, 2003, have not committed any of the enumerated violations for a period of not less than three (3) years after the initial publication of their names. Accordingly, these two (2) entities are removed and, as no new entities are named, CBP is not listing any foreign entities on the 592A list for the period starting March 31, 2004, and ending September 30, 2004.Start Signature
Dated: May 6, 2004.
Jayson P. Ahern,
Assistant Commissioner, Office of Field Operations.
[FR Doc. 04-10855 Filed 5-12-04; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4820-02-P