Man pleads guilty in sales of knockoffs

By Times Staff Writer
Published December 1, 2007

TAMPA - A Brandon man pleaded guilty in federal court Friday to selling knockoffs of Cartier and Rolex watches, Louis Vuitton handbags and Tiffany & Co. jewelry.

Jason B. Register is facing up to 10 years in prison. His sentencing is scheduled for Feb. 15. He remains free on bail until then.

Federal officials filed a complaint against Register in December 2006. He was accused him of trafficking in counterfeit goods, offering replicas ofluxury items through his Web site, www.exquisite-styles.com.

Cartier International took him to court in May 2006, asking a judge to issue a restraining order barring Register from selling anything resembling a Cartier product.

According to Register's plea agreement, customs and border protection agents X-rayed a shipment to Register from China and found the goods in November 2005. The box was marked "Sound Speaker." Federal prosecutors said customs agents opened the speakers and found smuggled watches with the names Rolex, Movado and Cartier.

That discovery led to the investigation into Register and Exquisite Styles, which prosecutors described as "a very large and well-organized online store."