Officials say warrant was sealed in Edmond warehouse raid

Friday, February 18th 2005, 6:19 am
By: News On 6

EDMOND, Okla. (AP) -- Federal officials raided a cutlery and weapons wholesaler, but aren't saying why.

Customs agent Mike Arnold says details of the raid on Wuu Jau Company could not be disclosed because agents had a sealed warrant filed in federal court.

First Assistant US Attorney Robert Troester declined to comment on the investigation.

Wuu Jau's Web site says the business, founded in 1984, deals largely in blades and collectible weapons.

On the site, the wholesaler advertises replica swords from the "Kill Bill" movies, blow dart guns and police batons.

The company's attorney, Mack Martin, said he had not yet seen the search warrant, but understands the seizure involves knives.

The company had previous problems with federal officials regarding its stock of knives.

In 1999, the federal government sued the corporation and officials Peter Liou, Margaret Lu and Ben Lu for defrauding customs officials and smuggling illegal switchblade knives.

In September 2000, the company settled the lawsuit, agreeing to pay $200,000.

After the settlement agreement, federal prosecutors filed criminal charges in August 2001 against the company. Wuu Jau illegally imported more than 380,000 butterfly knives, sold 60,496 butterfly knives and made $336,842.

The knives were smuggled in as lower- priced items, avoiding payment of higher duties, processing and harbor maintenance fees.