Hong Kong Customs conducted a two-week enforcement operation codenamed "Tracer III" from September 28 to October 11 to combat counterfeit goods activities involving cross-boundary transhipments and local deliveries. During the operation, Customs detected 14 related cases and seized more than 63 000 items of suspected counterfeit goods, including watches, mobile phone accessories, sunglasses, football jerseys, handbags and footwear, with an estimated market value of over $30 million. A man and four women were arrested.
Through intelligence analysis, Customs officers identified and raided a number of logistics companies in Lau Fau Shan, Yuen Long, Tsing Yi and Kwai Chung. About 63 000 items of suspected counterfeit goods with an estimated market value of about $30 million were seized.
After a follow-up investigation, Customs believed that some of the suspected counterfeit goods would have been sold locally while the rest would have been re-exported to overseas destinations. Subsequently, Customs officers organised two controlled delivery operations. On September 29, Customs officers seized nine pairs of suspected counterfeit sports shoes with an estimated market value of about $10,000 at an upstairs shop in North Point. A 28-year-old female consignee and a 26-year-old female tenant were arrested.
Later, Customs officers on October 2 further seized about 170 items of suspected counterfeit goods with an estimated market value of about $360,000 at a retail shop in Causeway Bay. A 39-year-old female consignee, a 49-year-old male shop owner and a 36-year-old female shopkeeper were arrested.
An investigation is ongoing and the five arrested persons have been released on bail pending further investigation.
Customs appeals to consumers to purchase goods at reputable shops or websites and to check with the trademark owners or authorised agents if the authenticity of a product is in doubt.
Customs also reminds traders and online sellers not to sell counterfeit goods and to be cautious and prudent in merchandising since selling counterfeit goods is a serious crime and offenders are liable to criminal sanctions.
Customs will continue to step up stringent inspections and conduct intelligence-led enforcement to vigorously combat different types of counterfeiting goods activities.
Under the Trade Descriptions Ordinance, any person who imports or exports or sells or possesses for sale any goods to which a forged trademark is applied commits an offence. The maximum penalty upon conviction is a fine of $500,000 and imprisonment for five years.
Members of the public may report any suspected counterfeiting activities to Customs' 24-hour hotline 2545 6182 or its dedicated crime-reporting email account (email@example.com).
Ends/Thursday, October 13, 2022