A Fort Mill man accused of selling counterfeit DVDs was arrested Monday in Rock Hill with nearly 300 counterfeit movies, 30 pairs of fake Air Jordans and designer jeans in his car, police say.
Fernando Soto, 46, was charged with possession with intent to sell counterfeit or pirated audio or video recordings and illegal distribution of recordings without the name and address of manufacturer and designation of featured artist . He was charged after he told Rock Hill police he sold shoes and pants out of a vehicle, according to police reports.
An employee at Brownlee Jewelers in Rock Hill notified police around 4 p.m. Monday of suspicious people who left a vehicle in the parking lot and kept returning to it during the day.
When police approached Soto in the parking lot, he got into another vehicle and put it in reverse. Another man, Brandon Harris, 24, of Fort Mill was attempting to get in the passenger seat when police approached, according to the report. Harris was arrested and charged with possession of marijuana.
A third man, Isaac McClure, 23, of Rock Hill fled after telling police that the vehicle in the jeweler's parking lot belonged to him. He was caught and charged with resisting arrest.
Police search Soto's vehicle and found the counterfeit DVDs, a portable DVD player, 17 pairs of Coogi jeans and 29 pairs of counterfeit Air Jordan shoes, according to the report.
"Soto met the other two suspects to sell them the counterfeit items he had in his car," said Rock Hill police Lt. Brad Redfearn.
According to the report, "Soto stated he had shoes and pants in the vehicle which he sold. Soto stated he purchased the items on the Internet and met Harris and McClure at Brownlee Jewelers at their request, even though he typically sold items elsewhere."
The phony name brand shoes will soon be on the feet of people who need them. Rock Hill police donated them all to the United Way. Legally, the clothes cannot be resold, so police can either burn them or give them away.
Grace Lewis with the United Way said they'll quickly find people who can wear them.
“I'll take the shoes to the Salvation Army Shelter for homeless men or the Clover Area Assistance Center," she said. "I'll just call, and whatever agency has the most pressing need, we'll give it to them."