Illegal ozone-depleting substances found in investigation in Philippines
DuPont Refrigerants has announced a successful settlement with T.A. Fresco of a case involving the packaging and sale of counterfeit illegal DuPont Suva 134a.
DuPont gave the background of the case: In 2012, DuPont initiated an investigation into T.A. Fresco, a company in the Philippines which was supplying refrigerants to a service provider in the shipping industry. An undercover purchase was conducted by DuPont, which revealed that T.A. Fresco was selling R-134a refrigerant cylinders with incorrect spelling and markings, indicating a counterfeit product. Upon further testing of the contents of the cylinders, the product was determined to be made up of more than 90% R-12 refrigerant. With the assistance of US Homeland Security officials, the local police raided the T.A. Fresco warehouse and seized 511 counterfeit cylinders, falsely labelled as “DuPont™ Suva 134a”.
In the third quarter of 2013, it negotiated the settlement of the case, which included a formal public apology in a national newspaper in the Philippines, full compensation for the destruction of the counterfeit refrigerant and monetary compensation for the illegal distribution of the product, DuPont revealed. Most importantly, said DuPont, the negotiation resulted in disclosure of the source of supply to T.A. Fresco. A separate legal investigation has been opened on the named company in China, it added.
“This case was not only a blatant counterfeit situation, but also involved the illegal smuggling of ODS, violating the Montreal Protocol,” emphasised Elizabeth M Sassano, Global Brand Protection Manager, DuPont Refrigerants. “DuPont takes protection of its brands and safety and compliance with environmental international treaties very seriously. We will continue to pursue and prosecute such cases to the fullest extent of the law.”