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They have -- the instrument of choice for legends like BB king Bob Dylan Eric Clapton and even ZZ top but now the future may be uncertain for.
Gibson guitar after federal agents recently raided the company's headquarters in several of its factories.
Taking what the millions of dollars worth of exotic wood from India.
Plus a number of guitars and computer files.
Now the feds are claiming that Gibson illegally imported the would.
And according to government documents if the war that had just been finished by workers overseas instead of by Americans.
Then it would have been perfectly legal to import.
Now meanwhile not only does the Indian government freely allow the export of the special would.
Gibson is not the only guitar maker that is using it so why are they the only ones being targeted now could have could it have anything to do with the fact that Gibson CEO.
Has donated to conservative candidates Wallace counterparts at other guitar companies have mostly donated to Democrats.
Now the attorney general Eric Holder insist that no.
Politics are involved with some members of congress and -- outrage calling for an investigation and demanding answers.
Joining me now with reaction is the CEO of the great Gibson guitar company.
And that's Henry Jessica -- -- -- -- Henry Oreo.
Very well thank you for having every musician I know it's got to be Gibson I was talking to Ricky Matlock Leonard Skinner one of the great guitarist.
He he was outraged over this is while and as are many others.
Here's what I want to understand here so America needs jobs.
And a bottle you claims that you -- this wouldn't legally correct this is all phony just to start.
We we did and we have a letter from the union government saying that this product was good legal export from India which is the point.
-- -- a solo -- that's point number one point number two.
If the -- were finished in India.
And sent -- -- then it's perfectly legal which means that and how many is it be better business.
We've been in business and CT nine -- four OK so that would mean.
That all those American jobs that actually finish the -- and get it to that high quality that every musician loves.
Than those jobs will be loss is that not correct.
That's right you know that the the government actually said.
And in -- case where we have.
In federal court.
That we we should be manufacturing guitars in Madagascar car.
It didn't you ought to be manufacturing.
So we should just take your whole company how many people do -- Gibson.
12100 people in the United States okay.
You know what 12100 people at a time when jobs are tight.
Are those are important jobs that would mean twelve what are people.
Had a very difficult time in a very difficult economy getting the you know getting new -- I saw this that he sent a letter to president Barack Obama what -- you tell us about.
Well I sent a letter when we first got.
Approximately two years ago.
And said what do why do we know and I mentioned all the things that we've done to.
Get the right kind of would.
Working with the Rainforest Alliance in the four stewardship council and we've been very active actually in getting would sourced.
That is environmentally friendly and so forth.
Yeah and and we we saw nothing wrong when you know we had although appropriate documents.
To import the wood and so forth then.
We had a hostile raid -- no notice I sent the letter and basically have never gotten a response.
I actually called.
The white house office two months after I sent the letter to to ensure that the letter had arrived and been seen in.
Yes it has in no risk.
Bonds right so that basically.
That if this is about the use of ebony in and some other fine woods that are rare sedar.
But if you have the permission of the -- government which you do.
Then you have the right to import it and they're saying that you fraudulently labeled -- -- to conceal.
And and circumvent the Indian law here and this is a law that goes back to 19100.
The Lacey act which is originally passed to regulate trade and bird feathers and used that we use for hats amended to cover wood -- 2008 here.
So is this a case where the government.
Is basically encouraging you.
To fire your people to go overseas.
And to eliminate American jobs but you can still sell the product in America.
That's apparently what they're doing and that's just -- that's the way they're acting -- a and -- it certainly is is causing great harm to our business they have shut our factories down.
And they have confiscated raw material was prevents us from manufacturing.
Having to put our people.
Out of work and you know that's -- fact.
I don't even know this takes my breath away this is sold up.
And it by the way you're not the only person.
In an industry to -- do you think that's a politically motivated because you've donated to conservatives.
I have been a hard.
I don't know I certainly have -- donated to conservatives I've donated to.
Democratic candidate to point to in the past.
I can't believe politics.
All I can causes the government to do something this.
I so I don't know.
Look -- many conservatives.
Got audited in the Clinton years interesting story there I believe anyway.
I wish -- the best -- and congratulations on -- great product that I that's sad to hear that a great company that employs American workers.
I've been told to move to Madagascar.
Or whoever the targeted -- All right thanks -- there was.
Thank you very much coming up I go head to head -- PBS's.
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