$43 million in fake goods seized in Texas

Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) seized $42.9M dollars in fake apparel and accessories in Laredo, Texas this week. The 200,000 counterfeit items included Nike, Adidas and Rolex fakes.

Goods seized in Laredo, Texas - Photo: ICE

In a statement, an ICE representative said the goods were being “clandestinely smuggled into Mexico”, and were seized in the second bust of its kind in the last three months. 

The seizure included a range of counterfeited branded goods, covering apparel, luxury goods and accessories. Faked brands included Burberry, Calvin Klein, Chanel and Coach, as well as Dolce & Gabbana, Gucci, Louis Vuitton, Fendi and Yves St. Laurent. Counterfeited technological goods purporting to be made by brands such as Apple were also seized. 

The global counterfeiting business is growing rapidly: according to a report released last year by the International Trademark Association and International Chamber of Commerce, it is estimated that the market will reach $2.3 trillion in the next four years, a significant uptick from 2015’s estimate of $1.7 trillion.  

Despite the fact that China has been tightening up on legislation in an attempt to reduce counterfeits, the same report found that the nation still accounts for 75% of counterfeit goods, with countries such as Myanmar, North Korea and Vietnam also playing an increasingly important role in global schemes. 

Indeed, in the case of this most recent mass seizure in Texas, the counterfeit merchandise in question originated from China.

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