Feds to Gibson Guitar 2009: Outsource Work To Madagascar

The information in italics comes from an INTERVIEW with Henry Juskiewicz:
In 2009, subsequent to the first Federal raid, Gibson sued to have the wood which was confiscated returned to them.
The feds, in a pleading, stated that if Gibson outsourced the finishing of their fingerboard wood to Madagascar, their troubles would go away.
The Feds have never filed charges, but will not return the confiscated wood, now totalling a million dollars. They have also requested a stay (delay) of the proceedings in the lawsuit filed by Gibson.
Total costs of two raids are approaching three million dollars.
The Feds also said in their pleadings that they don’t recognized Madagascar, but their interpretation of the law states that Gibson should not have the unfinished wood.
Madagascar has sent statements that Gibson is not violating their laws.
The case regarding the wood from India (the second raid) is similar.
Gibson has been compliant with stewardship of rare wood in the past, and considers itself a leader in this area.
There are still no charges against Gibson guitar in connection with these raids, and the Federal government is holding the fingerboard wood (likely not in correct storage). It is affecting the price of your guitars if you buy from that company.
There will be 2000 American jobs lost if the Feds succeed in killing Gibson Guitars

WSJ has more dispassionate coverage HERE, and that article recognizes the difficulty and inflated cost of doing business in other countries, with the U.S. trying to interpret their laws and their own enforcement policies.

Gibson is using the twitter hashtag #thiswillnotstand, and its facebook page to bring news of their troubles to us. Here’s their statement about the raids on their own website.

Government Raids on Gibson Guitars

Gibson Guitar company has been raided for the second time over their supposed use of rare (endangered ) wood in making musical instruments.

Gibson is suing the government (Forestry and Wildlife agency) over a half million dollars in materials seized in 2009.  This second raid occurred just before the lawsuit trial date.

Indian authorities have certified the exportation of rosewood and ebony finger boards to be sent to Gibson guitars.  The U.S. government interprets Indian law differently to state that somehow the fingerboards are not legally obtained by Gibson.

Note…… it’s not just Gibson guitars which utilizes these fingerboards from India. It’s obvious to any guitarist who has shopped for various instruments. Gibson is singled out among the many musical instrument manufacturers for abuse.

Here’s WSJ coverage of Gibson’s woes and the fears that any musicians have over bringing instruments through customs.

The government is attempting to shut down Gibson Guitar Co. Hope and Change! Laser-like focus on JOBS!