Pat Swindall’s name back in court for selling counterfeit sunglasses

Former U.S. Congressman Pat Swindle at College Park City Hall. John Spink, jspink@ajc.com

Pat Swindall is no stranger to the court system.

Twenty-five years ago, the former U.S. Rep was convicted of perjury. More recently he was charged with making illegal campaign contributions.

More recently than that, the politician turned developer, faced possible foreclosure on a mini-mall for which he borrowed more than $10 million.

Now his name is in U.S. District Courts with charges of a stranger sort — selling counterfeit merchandise.

Swindall, along with his wife Kim Swindall, is named in a case brought by Luxottica Group, the Italian corporation which manufactures luxury eyewear brands such as Coach, Chanel, Oakley, Ray Ban and more. Luxottica also operates over 7,000 retail stores, including LensCrafters, Pearle Vision, and Sunglass Hut.

The Swindalls are owners of Greenbriar Discount Mall, an indoor flea market in a lonely East Point strip mall called Greenbriar Marketplace.

While Kimberly Swindall is listed as sole owner of the flea market, her husband is the “manager” of the property.  Kimberly Swindall also holds 50 percent ownership in the actual strip mall.

A haven for knock-off designer goods, the mall has been the site of numerous investigations and police raids including a 2013 bust by the Atlanta Police Department and the Department of Homeland Security which yielded at least $400,000 in counterfeit goods and two arrests.

Copyright infringement cases are nothing new, but in this case, not only is the court recognizing the potential liability of the store owner selling fake goods, but also the owners of the mall property on which the fakes are being sold.

The case is expected to go to trial later this year.

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A friend and I sat in on part of his original trial in Federal court. His defense was outlandish.

Scott P Brown
Scott P Brown

Silly... Owners of property shouldnt be liable tenant utilization choices.

Kathleen684
Kathleen684

Interesting. He seems to live up (down?) to his last name.

4tommy
4tommy

Tommy Harris tommypharris@msn.com

Mouyal
Mouyal

swindler?  way?no way

walkthetalk60
walkthetalk60

seemed to fail to mention he is a UGA graduate having been president of his class- did he learn his trade on Lumkin St ????

independentiii
independentiii

Just another fine, upstanding Republican small business owner doing what they do best.


What a sleaze...

tomnsuwanee
tomnsuwanee

What ! He is not an expert on sun glasses ? How could rent to any business that he is not an expert in ? But if you are both certified liars like the Clintons, you get to give 30 minute speeches for $250,000 on any subject and it is legal. What a screwed up society

we are living in. And yes AJC- you are again showing your true colors ! 

Susykaym
Susykaym

@tomnsuwanee "Copyyright infringement cases are nothing new, but in this case, not only is the court recognizing the potential liability of the store owner selling fake goods, but also the owners of the mall property on which the fakes are being sold."

mxpickbellsouthnet
mxpickbellsouthnet

@tomnsuwanee  You're kidding right?!?  An eighth-grader could deconstruct your argument in seconds, OH!!  Are you a seventh-grader?

Roberta Cromlish
Roberta Cromlish

Covicted of perjury. But HE was a Republican. Need I point out the difference?

Chuck_L
Chuck_L

Strange. The caption on the picture of Mr. Swindall says something completely different from the text of the article. The caption indicates he's trying to "kick people out" without a permit. Does that mean he's evicting them? Is that why a permit is required? Why use a vague term? I've never heard of a "kick people out" permit. The text of the article doesn't mention the lease or the "kicking people out" but talks about counterfeit goods. Was he selling counterfeit goods or were just the vendors selling them? Is he, as landlord, responsible for the actions of the vendors?

Riceville1
Riceville1

There is something fundamentally wrong with our system.  Here is a crook, who claimed to be made bankrupt by fighting his perjury charges, who pops up years later owning a $10 MM piece of property from which he once again breaks the law.

DerekGator
DerekGator

@Riceville1 :  Smart wealthy people who go bankrupt, almost always end up wealthy again.  The skills and intelligence that made them wealthy the first time, usually will make them wealthy again.