Counterfeiting of highly desirable and or luxury goods has been a growing problem for decades. As the world learns more about leading brands, counterfeiters get smarter, more adaptable, and produce goods of much higher quality than we saw in times gone by. They are also harder to catch.
Though perhaps less hard to catch if they try to ship hundreds of thousands of pairs of shoes to one place.
One Tuesday it was announced that 5 New Yorkers had been caught importing the shoes and then branding them with Nike trademarks before attempting to sell them on. US Immigration and Customs Enforcement's sub division (Homeland Security Investigations) estimates that the five have imported around 380,000 pairs of the shoes since January 2016.
It is thought that the shoes had been sold across New York State and possibly beyond, with some of the them even warehoused in New York City.
Punishments for this type of counterfeiting are much more severe than in the UK, and the maximum sentence for conspiring to traffic counterfeit goods is 20 years' imprisonment for each conspirator. A US District Attorney confirmed the charges and said that he hoped that a clear message was sent to other counterfeiters – "Just don't do it". We hope he managed to keep a straight face.
If you have any questions on the above, please do not hesitate to contact the team at McDaniel & Co. on 0191 281 4000 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
in: EU/International, Passing Off, Trade Marks