As Fox News reports here, the feds in 2009 and 2011 seized imported wood "fingerboards" for guitars because they were made of wood product illegally exported from other countries. However, the only reason it was illegal was that the product was not finished before shipment. In other words, because Gibson chose to use U.S. labor, rather than foreign labor, the materials were illegal.
From the story:
The shipments of wood from Madagascar and India were deemed illegal because they were unfinished -- something those countries prohibited. However, finished fingerboards presumably would have been legal. In the Indian case, court documents said one intercepted shipment was "falsely" labeled as finished when it wasn't.
Gibson CEO Henry Juszkiewicz said last year that the U.S. government essentially went after his company because the work wasn't being done in India.
"The fact that American workers are completing the work in the United States makes it illegal," he said last year.
Obama's final resolution of the claims: a $300,000 fine for Gibson. Absurd.