2 Oct 2019
CBP Seizes Fake Goods of Increasing Value
CBP remains committed to preventing the entry of counterfeit and pirated goods into the United States through an aggressive enforcement intellectual property rights programme. As part of these efforts, the agency has announced that CBP officers took the following enforcement actions in September.
- On 11 September, CBP officers at Los Angeles International Airport seized 28 counterfeit National Basketball Association championship rings with an estimated value of US$560,000 if genuine. The rings were found inside a wooden box with the apparent intent to be sold as a collection. The box was discovered in an enforcement exam on a shipment from mainland China with a final destination in Arizona.
- On 13 September, Philadelphia CBP officers seized 595 electronic cigarette pods of various flavours that were shipped from Hong Kong to an address in Warrington, Pennsylvania. Officers detained the shipment on 3 September and worked with CBP’s Consumer Products and Mass Merchandising trade experts to determine that the products were counterfeit. E-cigarettes are now controversial in the U.S. market, with the governor of Massachusetts recently calling for a four-month ban on all sales of e-cigarette products in his state amid a nationwide outbreak of a respiratory illness associated with these devices.
- On 25 September, Louisville CBP officers announced that seizures in July of counterfeit bracelets with an “if-genuine” worth of over US$90 million led to the arrest of a North Carolina individual who had been discovered with a cache of more than 3,200 fake Cartier bracelets.
According to data released earlier this year, mainland China again topped the list of IPR infringers in fiscal year 2018, accounting for 54.4 percent of the manufacturer’s suggested retail price of seized goods at US$761.1 million, up from 46.0 percent or US$554.6 million in FY 2017. Hong Kong remained in second place with a 31.5 percent share or US$440.3 million in FY 2018, down from 32.0 percent or US$386.2 million in FY 2017. Mainland China also topped the list of IPR infringers terms of total seizures, with the number of seizures at 15,674 in FY 2018, while Hong Kong ranked second with a total of 13,785 seizures.
As part of its on-going “Fake Goods, Real Dangers” initiative, CBP is publishing information on-line to raise consumer awareness about the consequences and dangers associated with the purchase of counterfeit goods. CBP has established an electronic reporting system and a toll-free number to encourage reporting by consumers and businesses.