Federal prosecutors have charged a Southern California man with illegally importing more than 1,000 counterfeit Microsoft Office CD-ROMs and selling them to unsuspecting customers over the Internet.
The U.S. attorney's office says 30-year-old Collier Bennett Harper of Lakewood was arrested Friday and charged with two counts each of trafficking counterfeit goods and smuggling.
Prosecutors say Harper contacted reputable dealers on eBay and hired them to sell his counterfeit software. He allegedly instructed the sellers how to list the software, describing the product as new and authentic.
Investigators estimate the seized software would have retailed for approximately $150,000.
If convicted, Harper faces a maximum sentence of 60 years in federal prison.
City News Service says Harper has been ordered to remain in custody pending a bail hearing Thursday.