OAKLAND — After years of concern about solar panels based on Chinese components possibly being made in China and then distributed across the U.S., the U.S. Customs and Border Protection division of U.S. Customs and Border Protection in Baltimore announced Monday that it has made a significant seizure of counterfeit solar panels from China.
The agency intercepted 3,257 counterfeit solar panels off the East Coast near Washington D.C. The production of the counterfeit solar panels was detected because the components used in the project were similar to those involved in a 2012 solar plant fire in Mexico where 243,000 solar panels were taken, causing substantial damage to the plant. The suspicious materials were sent to a distribution site in Delaware.
Customs and Border Protection reports that similar counterfeit panels have been seized at borders in Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Texas, Florida, Ohio, Kentucky, Indiana, California, Massachusetts, New York, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Virginia, Maryland, and Virginia.
The solar panels were seized under the Tariff Act of 1930, which includes the duty on the importation of nonresident articles for use in artisans and antique industries.