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December 25, 2011

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DaVinci says it will sue bureau after hefty fine

TROUBLED DaVinci Furniture said yesterday it will file a lawsuit against the Shanghai Industrial and Commercial Administrative Bureau after the furniture seller was fined 1.33 million yuan (US$209,895) on Friday for selling unqualified products.

The Shanghai-based furniture seller, which has been accused of selling furniture made in China while claiming it had been imported from Italy, said in a statement it did not lie about the place of origin about its products soon after the commercial bureau announced the fine.

The statement said the company "does not accept the check results that ruled seven pieces of furniture were unqualified."

The company also claimed the process of the checks, completed by a third party, was illegal as the "testing time was short of the required period."

However, DaVinci did apologize that it did not hand out instruction manuals in Chinese for some furniture.

In response, Shanghai Industry and Commercial Administrative Bureau said yesterday that an "apology is far from enough and the violator should be punished according to the law.

"Customers will decide whether a company is doing honest business and a court will decide whether the fines are correct," the bureau added.

The bureau said products sold by DaVinci bearing the Cappelletti brand did not include Chinese instructions, failing to meet national standards.

And some Cappelletti furniture failed a bureau quality test. Labels failed to tell consumers what the pieces were made of, as terms such as wood, metal and leather were too general, the bureau said.

The bureau also said some furniture, which the company said was solid wood, was in fact made of melamine boards or high-density boards.


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