Ever since federal agents first raided Gibson Guitars in 2009 to confiscate materials supposedly imported "illegally” from Madagascar, the company has been caught in a bureaucratic nightmare. More recently – last August to be exact – armed federal martials from the Department of Justice stormed two manufacturing plants in Memphis and Nashville, seizing wood (imported from India) the corporation uses to make fret boards. After months of waiting, however, Gibson Guitars is still waiting to hear whether or not the DOJ will file criminal charges against them.
Meanwhile, since the criminal investigation is still ongoing, the DOJ has brazenly blocked Gibson’s civil lawsuit to reclaim their confiscated goods. Even more devastating, the company has stopped importing materials from abroad out of fear their manufacturing plants will once again be raided. Incredibly, Gibson Guitars is reduced to using alternative products (which are cheaper and inferior in quality), to make their musical instruments. In the end, it seems to me these frivolous lawsuits are only hurting Gibson’s reputation as a prestigious guitar manufacturer, disappointing consumers, and threatening the solvency of their business.
“We’re at a competitive disadvantage,” said Gibson’s CEO Henry Juszkiewicz. “Long term… our business will suffer, possibly quite severely."
(H/T The Right Scoop)