LOS ANGELES, Calif. (KTLA) -- Federal prosecutors charged a Westlake man Wednesday, claiming he tried to smuggle nearly 40,000 phony erectile dysfunction pills into LAX in his golf bag and luggage.
Kil Jung Lee, 71, is charged with trafficking counterfeit goods worth more than $700,000 when he returned home Feb. 25 from a trip to Korea. Federal officials said Lee, a former Korean law enforcement officer, carried 29,827 counterfeit Viagra tablets, 8993. counterfeit Cialis pills and 793 counterfeit Levitra tablets, the Los Angeles Times reported.
He also told authorities that he did not believe the pills were genuine and apologized before promising not to try bringing them into the country again.
Lab tests later revealed the drugs to be phony.
"The trafficking of pharmaceuticals is a growing problem," Immigration and Customs Enforcement spokeswoman Virginia Kice told the Times. "Because these pills are in demand, and people realize money is to be made, people are trying to smuggle them in so they can sell them. We write about issues like this because we want to raise awareness of using these impostor medications they pose safety risk."
Lee appeared in federal court Wednesday and was released on $10,000 bail without entering a plea. He faces a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison if convicted of the charges against him.
He is due to appear in court again on March 28.