201906.06

Press review on counterfeiting (May 2019)

By IP TWINS


PRESS


Belgium

1. After generic drugs, generic bikes! A journalistic investigation by a hidden camera in a shop selling competition bikes. Extract: “On site, the seller offers many brands, the best! ‘I can have almost any brand: Pinarello, Copa, Colnago, Specialized, Cippolini too, the frame costs around 1100 and sometimes 1200 euros, instead of 5000 euros.’ Economy! All these bikes come from China. The seller explains that the Chinese companies that work for major brands cushion the manufacturing mold of bicycle frames: ‘In fact, the bicycle frame manufacturing mold belongs to Chinese companies and this mold must be amortized. So, they make “generics” on the side’ (…) logos are on sale as well. The seller sells them 50 euros (…) But, at no time, the seller will not accept to put the logos himself on the bike”- rtbf.be, 2019-05-03.


Cameroon

2. The owner of the “Vachette” brand (keys and locks) is suing counterfeiters in the Douala-Bonanjo Court of First Instance. Counterfeit seizures had been carried out – camer.be, 2019-05-21.

3. Sugar Company of Cameroon (Sosucam) suffers H-heavy losses from smuggling and counterfeiting – linitiative.ca, 2019-05-16.


Canada

4. Several media reports on the outcome of the “Pacific Mall” case, named after the Pacific Mall in Ontario, which has hit the headlines in recent years. The US Department of Commerce had reported it as a counterfeit temple in a 2017 report (ustr.gov). After a lengthy investigation, eight people were charged and thousands of counterfeit items seized – ctvnews.ca, 2019-05-28 ; cbc.ca, 2019-05-28; styledemocracy.com, 2019-05-19; thestar.com, 2019-05-28; dailyhive.com, 2019-05-28; globalnews.ca, 2019-05-28; durhamregion.com, 2019-05-30.


China

5. Chinese police seized more than 210,000 hard disks produced by a network of counterfeiters who sold them under brand names such as Hewlett Packard and IBM. 56 suspects arrested in Nanjing, Beijing, Chongqing and Guangzhou – crn.com.au, 2019-05-12.


England and Wales

6. A person who pleaded guilty in a Gloucester court for various offenses related to the possession and supply of counterfeit cigarettes was sentenced to 18 months in prison – BBC.com, 2019-05-09


India

7. Police authorities seized 5700 kg (330 boxes) of counterfeit dairy products in Shahdara, Khanpur. The owners of the brands had been alerted by unhappy consumers and particularly low prices. Laboratory analyzes confirm the dangerousness of these counterfeit products. The defendants were arrested and released on bail – hindustantimes.com, 2019-05-31.


Ivory Coast

8. From January 1 to March 30, 2019, a total of 59,325 tons of counterfeit goods were seized by the National Committee against Counterfeiting. Counterfeits include counterfeit “Mink” brand oil (to polish your shoes), alcoholic beverages and spirits, toothpaste and even chainsaws! The article offers examples from previous semesters: medicines, ink cartridges, milk, confectionery, sardines, electrical wires, etc. – linfodrome.com, 2019-05-16.


Japan

9. Yokogawa Corporation warns of counterfeit products made in China, unreliable and dangerous for user safety – controlglobal.com, 2019-05-29.


Kenya

10. The Anti-Counterfeiting Authority has seized counterfeit goods worth more than 100 million Kenyan shillings in the past month, including electrical appliances (circuit breakers), sportswear, high clothing range, spare parts for motor vehicles, television antennas or ink refills for printers. According to Anti-Counterfeiting Authority, studies show that there is a strong correlation between illicit trade and slowing economic growth, the unemployment rate and crime – kbc.co.ke, 2019-05-06; the-star.co.ke, 2019-05-08.


France

11. The author begins by paying tribute to anti-counterfeiting customs officers: “A work of Sisyphus, while the traffic continues to increase and the size of the packages to shrink”. Some examples: Chanel bedding; Louis Vuitton curtains; counterfeit Gibson guitars; jerseys of the French football team (with the two stars), etc. Some statistical reminders about the number of seizures or the economic consequences of counterfeiting. Another reminder: “All industrial sectors are concerned” (as our monthly press review demonstrates). “Any company that has a logo, a brand, a patent is a potential target. In France, only croissants and baguette escape the activity of falsifiers, “jokes Piotr Stryszowski, OECD –  lesechos.fr, 2019-05-27.

12. A man is prosecuted in a criminal court for having opened a shop in his garden in which he sold bottles of counterfeit alcohol: “On bottles of wine and spirits he affixed a label with his name with a false name, and the acronym AOP”. In this same shop, he also sold drugs against erectile disorders (counterfeit “Viagra”), imported from Senegal. Among the charges: illegal practice of the profession of pharmacist and poisoning – ouest-france.fr, 2019-05-14; francebleu.fr, 2019-05-13.

13. “The Federation of Mechanical Industries is engaged in a partnership with the French IP Office (INPI) and the General Directorate of Customs and Indirect Rights, to set up a promotional program for the benefit of the metal trades. The federation will offer an operational service to member companies, especially those whose products are victims of counterfeiting” – mesures.com, 2019-05-17.

14. Following an intervention by the elite French police (heavily armed), the financial customs discovered nearly 4,000 counterfeits of major brands: Givenchy, Dior, Kenzo, Gucci, Balenciaga, Saint-Laurent. The article refers to “a perfectly arranged shop” – laprovence.com, 2019-05-23.

15. Union des Fabricants (Unifab) and the Association to Combat Illegal Trade called for the creation of an Observatory dedicated to the “watch, prevention and repression” of counterfeiting, smuggling and fraudulent sales on the Internet, with more information sharing – carnetsduluxe.com, 2019-05-13.


Singapore

16. Three people were arrested for allegedly selling counterfeit goods (shoes, clothing, bags, cases, luxury belts and scarves). The police carried out simultaneous searches in two stores in City Plaza. 370 pieces were seized. Detainees face a fine of up to S $ 100,000 and/or imprisonment for up to five years – channelnewsasia.com, 2019-05-24; theindependent.sg, 2019-05-25; channelnewsasia.com, 2019-05-02.


South Africa

17. The Barberton Court of First Instance sentenced a man for possession of counterfeit goods (1242 tracksuits from the Adidas brand) –  mpumalanganews.co.za, 2019-05-28.


United States

18. 1315 counterfeit countertop machines were seized in railway containers at the Canadian border, at the Falls International Int’l Port, Minnesota – valleynewslive.com, 2019-05-22; wdio.com, 2019-05-17.

19. At Washington Dulles International Airport, Customs and Border Protection officers seized 209 counterfeit phone cases (Nike, Adidas, Gucci, Louis Vuitton) from Hong Kong to Fredericksburg – loudountimes.com, 2019-05-31.

20. The NBA warns against the resurgence of counterfeit goods mimicking the jerseys of Milwaukee Bucks. Its communication policy focuses on the quality of goods and the economic and social risks (job losses) associated with counterfeiting – fox6now.com, 2019-05-16.

21. A Better Business Bureau study reveals the extent and consequences of counterfeiting in the United States. In particular, counterfeiting and piracy cost the US economy between $ 200 billion and $ 250 billion, and 88 percent of counterfeit goods come from China and Hong Kong. The sale of counterfeit goods online is widely developed. In 2018, the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaints Center processed 2,249 complaints about counterfeit goods and the Federal Trade Commission processed 552 complaints – thewashingtondailynews.com, 2019-05-27; nbcchicago.com, 2019-05-14.

22. A Brooklyn apparel and goods wholesaler was accused of considering the sale, including to the US military, of counterfeit goods manufactured in China valued at more than $ 20 million. The accused incurs a sentence to up to five years ‘imprisonment followed by three years’ probation and a fine of up to $ 250,000 (for electronic fraud). Activities related to counterfeit goods are punishable by up to 10 years’ imprisonment, followed by probation and a fine of up to $ 250,000. are cumulative in the United States – providencejournal.com, 2019-05-21.

23. Road safety experts warn about the resurgence of counterfeit bicycle helmets that do not meet safety standards – abc7chicago.com, 2019-05-29.

24. A man has been sentenced to more than four years in prison for selling fake tickets for sporting events, including the Super Bowl – foxnews.com, 2019-05-06.

25. The man who had mounted a fraudulent scheme of exchanging counterfeits of the iPhone brand (suggesting that they were defective or obsolete) (see iptwins.com) pleaded guilty to an Oregon judge. The accused incurs a sentence up to ten years ‘imprisonment, followed by three years’ probation and a fine of approximately $ 2,000,000 (double the profits). The defendant has already agreed to pay $ 200,000 to Apple, which could reduce his sentence – appleinsider.com, 2019-05-22.

26. US Customs and Border Protection Officers seized significant counterfeit cargo (luxury watches, handbags and sunglasses) at Louisville Port of Entry – wave3.com, 2019-05-14.

27. The US Attorney’s Office in Minnesota is seeking the confiscation of the 21,852 Barbie (Mattel) counterfeit dolls found in a rail container from Canada that had been imported by the parent company of the Dollar Tree chain of stores. The counterfeit goods had been shipped from Hong Hong – bringmethenews.com, 2019-05-01.

28. A 49-year-old man was sentenced to 24 months in jail for selling counterfeit airbags (at least 360 items, bearing Honda, Subaru, Nissan, and other brands) on a site called Rayscarparts71.com – ippromagazine.com, 2019-05-13.

29. Nikon confirms that some authorized distributors were selling counterfeit batteries for Nikon cameras – diyphotography.net, 2019-05-28.


Vietnam

30. Market Surveillance and LVMH join forces to eliminate counterfeiting – lecourrier.vn, 2019-05.

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