Northamptonshire County Council’s Trading Standards officers have issued a warning over the dangers of counterfeit goods following the execution of two warrants this week in relation to the selling of bogus goods on facebook.
The sellers involved had been previously warned that they were committing criminal offences by offering for sale and selling counterfeit items.
The first warrant was at a residential address in Rushden. The seller had ignored his previous warnings and continued to sell counterfeit DVDs of films, including ones currently showing at the cinema so not legitimately available on DVD. Officers seized computers and this investigation is ongoing.
The second warrant was at a residential address in Rothwell. The sellers had ignored their previous warnings and continued to sell counterfeit clothing including Nike trainers and Ralph Lauren tracksuits.
Officers seized a quantity of trade marked trainers, clothing, watches, sunglasses and two mobile phones. This investigation is also ongoing.
Where else do Trading Standards monitor for bogus goods?
Trading Standards regularly monitor social media as well as markets and car boot sales to identify sellers of counterfeit goods and will take appropriate enforcement action to ensure compliance.
The maximum penalty for a breach of the Trade Marks Act is 10 years imprisonment or an unlimited fine.
Cllr Andre Gonzalez De Savage, county council deputy leader and cabinet member for public protection, said: “The counterfeiting market preys on the vulnerable and wider public as a low cost alternative but we can't and mustn't understate the risks.
“It may be tempting to buy counterfeit goods at a cheap price, but pirate products are often poor quality, can be very dangerous and in some extreme cases can cause serious injury and even death.
“With no regulation of counterfeit goods and services there is a high risk of poor quality or harmful purchases with no comeback or guarantees. It also damages the economy and risks the loss of many UK jobs.
“Some and usually most counterfeit goods are of very plausible appearance and difficult to spot to the untrained eye.
“If you suspect someone may be selling counterfeit DVDs or other products, you can report it by phoning Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or the Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 04 05 06.”