Virginia Beach company sues after receiving thousands of dollars worth of alleged counterfeit N95 masks


SAN ANSELMO, CALIFORNIA – JULY 28: 3M brand N95 particulate respirators are displayed on a table on July 28, 2020 in San Anselmo, California. 3M reported second quarter earnings that fell short of analyst expectations and showed overall sales falling 12.2 percent to $7.18 billion despite a ramp-up in sales of N95 face masks due to the coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic. (Photo Illustration by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

VIRGINIA BEACH (WAVY) — A Virginia Beach company is suing after thousands of dollars worth of N95 and KN95 respirator masks they ordered early in the coronavirus pandemic ended up being counterfeit, according to a federal lawsuit.

MJL Enterprises, a government contractor, filed the lawsuit last week in Norfolk against Eco Lighting USA Limited Liability Company, based in New Jersey.

According to the lawsuit, Eco Lighting reached out to MJL in late March when N95 masks and other personal protective equipment were in short supply and said it had a large supply of “FDA approved” N95 and KN95 for sale. MJL intended to resell the masks to its federal clients.

MJL ended up buying $17,000 worth of N95s and $387,500 worth of KN95s from Eco Lighting on April 9, according to the lawsuit, and orally requested that they provide proof the masks were FDA certified.

However MJL didn’t get the masks within 14 days as required by the purchase agreement, and requested a full refund on June 2, the lawsuit states. After Eco Lighting refused, MJL learned on June 11 and 12 the certificates of registration provided by Eco Lighting were not issued by the noted registering agents and the Chinese manufacturers on the certificates didn’t claim to produce the “FDA certified masks,” the lawsuit states.

MJL stopped reselling the masks on June 12 after the findings, with several customers reaching and saying the masks were not genuine.

MJL has requested a jury trial and more than $600,000 in damages.

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